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Thursday’s 2A Volleyball: Bearcats Survive Five Set Thriller Against Tigers

By The Chronicle

W.F. West and Centralia battled for five sets, with the Tigers battling back down 2-0 to force a fifth set, but it was the Bearcats earning a 3-2 win in EvCo Swamp Cup volleyball on Ron Brown Court in Centralia on Thursday.

The Bearcats won the first two sets with scores of 25-15 and 25-17. Centralia came from behind and won the next two sets 25-21 and 30-28.

W.F. West collected themselves for the fifth set and won 15-11 to take the match.

Mak Moore led W.F. West with 31 kills, eight aces and 27 digs. Paytton Crawford tallied 50 assists and Kailey Hoyt added 10 kills and served 100 percent. Megan Pallas contributed 15 digs and three blocks.

“I think it’s a good message for us. They were playing their hearts out. We let off the gas and missed 17 serves on the night,” W.F. West coach Emily Mora said. “We just made a lot of mental errors. It’s easier to address it before districts, it was a nice gut check. You want to go to districts? It’s got to be better than what we’ve been doing and those are good to have as an athlete.”

W.F. West finished the season 11-3 overall and 7-3 in EvCo games. The Lady Bearcats are the No. 3 seed and will face Woodland at 4 p.m. next Thursday in Hockinson to begin the District 4 2A volleyball tournament.

“I know we’re going to be more focused. We’ve got a big goal ahead of us, they’re going to work hard to achieve that goal so I’m excited,” Mora said. “Once you get into districts, you don’t get any easy games. I’m confident in my team’s ability to fight through adversity.”

Danika Jensen, in her final prep volleyball match, had seven kills, 17 digs and served 18 of 18 and Kylie Sharp added 24 digs and 12 of 13 serving.

Jaelyn Friberg served 25 of 26 and tallied 24 assists and Kennedy Strophy totaled six kills and served 11 of 11. Hailey Brann had eight kills for the Tigers.

Even with the loss, Centralia coach Marti Smith felt her team played great in their final game of the season.

“What we were really striving for tonight, at the end of the night, we could walk out of the gym feeling good about how we played,” Smith said. “It just felt epic. The fans were really into it, there were so many times we thought on the bench that the ball was going to hit the floor and someone dove in to save it. It was one of those things, you had to be there.”

It was the final prep volleyball match for Danika Jensen, Hannah Porter and Jaelyn Friberg. Smith said the performances from the three seniors was “amazing”.

“It was the best that we played. That’s kind of what you’re hoping for at the end of the season, you’re playing your best. There wasn’t a single person who didn’t have their hand in the game,” Smith said. “It was wonderful to see whoever we put on the court, they brought it tonight. I’m just so proud.”

Centralia ends the season 0-14 and 0-10 in EvCo matches.

Rochester Punches District Tournament Ticket With Win Over Aberdeen

ROCHESTER — The Warriors needed five sets, but Rochester was able to prevail 3-2 over Aberdeen in an Evergreen 2A Conference volleyball match here on Thursday.

With the win, the Warriors are the No. 4 seed out of the EvCo into the District 4 2A volleyball tournament. It is the first time since 2006 that Rochester has made the tournament and will face Ridgefield at 6 p.m. in Hockinson next Thursday to open districts.

Aberdeen won set one 25-23, but Rochester answered by taking the next two sets with scores of 25-17 and 29-27. The Bobcats recovered to win the fourth set, 25-18. Rochester dug deep and won the fifth set, 15-11.

Lexie Jones-Sederberg had three stuff blocks and 12 kills and Emily Morris added 13 kills and four aces. Bethany Hawes added three aces and had several long serving runs and Jasmine Esparza-Klatush totaled 25 digs.

“The girls are ecstatic. It’s our first time to districts in this league. We’re just pumped to have that privilege in our tough league,” Rochester coach Wendy Hawes said. “The biggest thing we were saying tonight was just stay confident. Relax. There was a lot of ups and downs. A lot of crazy calls.”

The Warriors finished the regular season 8-7 overall and 4-6 in the EvCo.

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