Aberdeen and Raymond-South Bend picked up key league victories on Tuesday as we review the local high school volleyball action on the Harbor.
Aberdeen 3, Rochester 0
In what’s shaping up to be a tight 2A Evergreen League race, the last thing the Aberdeen Bobcats wanted to do was drop its second league contest in a row, and to a winless Rochester team no less.
But the Bobcats took care of business, getting an all-around effort en route to a straight-set victory over the Warriors on Thursday in Aberdeen.
The Bobcats (5-1 overall, 2-1 2A Evergreen) won by scores of 25-18, 25-17 and 25-21 using a solid service game and a consistent net presence while getting contributions from Bobcats up and down the bench.
“What I love about this team is that everybody is capable of everything,” Aberdeen head coach Desiree Glanz said. “Everybody stepped up and everybody knew their jobs.”
Tied at 16-all in the first game, Aberdeen went on a 9-2 run to close out the set on a service streak from senior defensive specialist Claire Mottinger and take a 1-0 lead with a 25-18 win.
Aberdeen carried the momentum into the second game, taking an 11-3 lead when the defense of senior middle blocker Alyvia Lamont caused a Rochester shot to sail long.
But with the Cats leading 24-17 and one point away from a 2-0 lead, Aberdeen faltered, allowing five straight Warriors points.
Lamont took matters into her own hands, stuffing a wayward Rochester pass that sailed over the net for a 25-17 win.
In the third set, the Warriors (0-7, 0-3) tied the Bobcats multiple times and took a 16-15 lead after an Aberdeen shot went over the end line.
But with the game tied at 17, the Cats went on another service streak led by Mottinger, who added two aces to her total of four for the match, putting the Bobcats a 21-17 lead.
Up 22-21, Camp and senior outside hitter Savannah Strickland took over. A Strickland kill on a perfect set from senior Cameryn Micheau hit the floor for a 23-20 lead followed by a Micheau feed to Camp for a 24-21 lead.
On match point, a soft Rochester shot was rejected by Camp into the chest of Rochester middle hitter Delany Winter, who couldn’t get the ball up in time, leading to a 25-21 Aberdeen win and straight-set victory.
As a team, the Bobcats served at an 87.5% clip, converting 63-of-72 service attempts.
Mottinger led Aberdeen, going 20-of-21 from the service line with four aces.
“We’ve been struggling with serves lately, but I think tonight was really good,” Mottinger said. “It really helped us to get us into a flow and tally up points.”
Micheau had another solid game running the Cats offense, dishing out 22 assists on the evening, with Camp and Hollingsworth leading the way with nine and seven kills, respectively.
Two days after losing in straight sets to Black Hills, the game was as close to a must win as the Bobcats could get, considering if Aberdeen is to earn a playoff spot, beating the lower-tier league teams is essential.
“We got to face (Rochester) in the Centralia Tournament, so we kind of knew what we were getting into,” Glanz said. “I said (to my team), ‘Don’t take any team for granted. It’s anybody’s game. Just play your game and play how you know.’ I really wanted to come out and set a fast pace and get a lead right away.”
“We knew what we were in for and we knew that we could beat them,” Mottinger said of the team’s mindset entering the game. “We just decided to not think about the last game and play our hardest. … I think energy and mentality is really important in this sport and once we used those two together, we played really well.”
Aberdeen sits in a tie for third place in the league and has a key matchup against first-place Tumwater at 7 p.m. Tuesday in Tumwater.
Rochester 18 17 21 – 0
Aberdeen 25 25 25 – 3
Leading players: Aberdeen – Micheau (22 assists, 7-7 service, ace); Camp (9 kills, 9-13 service, 4 aces, block); Hollingsworth (7 kills); Lamont (5 kills, block); Knutson (3 kills, 6 digs, 8-10 service, ace); Patrick (3 kills); Strickland (2 kills, 6-6 service, ace); Pendergrass (2 kills); Mottinger (20-21 service, 4 aces, 3 digs); Vessey (6-7 service); A. Yakovich (3-3 service, ace); L. Yakovich (4-5 service).
Raymond-South Bend 3, Forks 1
If Raymond-South Bend is going to win a 2B Pacific League title in its first year as a combo team, the Ravens had to beat the other top teams in the league, namely the Forks Spartans.
In their first league meeting of the season against, RSB did just that, rallying after losing the first game to earn a 3-1 win on Thursday in Raymond.
RSB (5-2, 4-0 2B Pacific) trailed 24-12 in the first game before a seven-point streak brought the score to 24-19.
Despite losing the first game 25-19 to the Spartans (4-1, 2-1), the late-game streak provided a momentum boost that carried the Ravens throughout the remainder of the match.
“We just started scoring. That momentum carried us for the rest of the night,” RSB head coach Julie Jewell said.
Though each game was hotly-contested, the Ravens swept the final three sets by scores of 26-24, 25-22 and 25-21 to take sole possession of first place in the league.
“That really puts us in a good spot for finishing league and getting us a decent seed into district,” Jewell said. “My kids did not back down. They wanted to win and went out and executed.”
Jewell said she had three goals for her team heading into the first-place matchup, and the Ravens checked every one off the list.
“Our goals were to communicate, play our game regardless of what Forks brought to the match and play as a team,” she said. “We met every single one of those goals.”
RSB senior Kyndal Koski and junior Fatima Delgado held down the defense, with Koski recording a team-best 22 digs to go along with nine kills.
Sophomores Ava Baugher and Kassie Koski combined for 10 kills and 12 blocks at the net while junior Emily Howell went 19-of-20 from the service line with four aces.
Junior Berklee Morley guided the Ravens offense with a game-high 24 assists.
“We were fun to watch and I haven’t been able to say that yet this year,” Jewell said.
RSB plays at North Beach at 6 p.m. on Tuesday.
Forks 25 14 22 21 – 1
RSB 19 26 25 25 – 3
Leading players: RSB – Kyn. Koski (17-17 service, 22 digs, 9 kills, 3 aces); Delgado (9-9 service); Baugher (4 kills, 6 blocks); Kas. Koski (6 kills, 6 blocks, 15 digs); Morley (24 assists); McMullen (15 digs); Howell (19-20 service, 4 aces).
North Beach 3, Chief Leschi 0
North Mason 3, Elma 2 (Wednesday)