Girls volleyball has a rich history in the state of Iowa and the city of Cedar Rapids is a big part of it.

1970 was the year volleyball became a high school sport in Iowa. It was a little slow to gain a foothold as it replaced fall softball through the years at more than 300 Iowa high schools. Fast forward 50 years and more than 11,000 high school girls now play the sport, more than any other sport in Iowa. Next week, Cedar Rapids will play host to the Iowa Girls' High School Athletic Union State Volleyball Tournament for the 30th consecutive year.

The first serve of tournament action will be at 10 a.m. on Monday, November 2 when the top seed in Class 5A, Dowling Catholic of Des Moines, takes on 8th-seeded Dubuque Hempstead on one court. The other court will feature #2 seed Ankeny and 7th-seeded Ankeny Centennial. A total of 28 other matches will take place Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.

Thursday, November 5, the championship matches in all five classes will be waged. The first state champion will be crowned after the 5A Final at 10 a.m. and the final championship, in 1A, begins at 8 p.m. that evening. You can see all five brackets below, along with specifics on parking.

This year's tournament will have a number of policies and procedures in effect, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Anyone attending the event can get all the specific details HERE.

I love seeing all the school colors, windshields painted with messages of good luck to their respective team, and all the excitement the fans bring to Cedar Rapids for the tournament each year. According to a media release from the Alliant Energy Powerhouse, where the tournament is held, the tourney's economic impact in recent years has been about $1.9 million annually. Hopefully, Cedar Rapids will be hosting the tournament for years to come.

Good luck to everyone competing this year.

Alliant Energy Powerhouse