The Frontenac and St. Mary’s-Colgan High School volleyball teams earned spots in the state tournament by winning the sub-state championship on Saturday.
RAIDERS CLAIM SUB-STATE TITLE
It was an up-and-down season for the Frontenac Raiders, but they defended their home court and came away with a pair of sweeps over Galena and Baxter to win the sub-state title.
“I’m so happy for these kids, especially our seniors,” FHS head coach Cassie Rhuems said. “They played the best volleyball they could today, and because of that, they are headed to the state tournament. Each and every one of our kids had a hand in today’s success. They all played so hard and gave everything they had every single ball.”
The Raiders began the day with a sweep over Galena, winning 25-8 in both sets.
Bailey Rhuems had eight service points and three digs in the win.
Madison Davis contributed nine service points, six digs, seven kills and 10 assists.
Maia McManis posted seven service points and five digs, while Gracen Hipfl contributed six service points and seven assists.
Jayden Meyer finished the game with six service points and six digs.
Frontenac went on to beat Baxter in the championship game by scores of 25-16 and 25-20.
Hipfl contributed 12 service points, 11 assists and three digs, while her teammate Bria Ginavan posted six service points, nine digs and four kills.
Bailey Rhuems tallied 11 digs and two service points, while Davis finished with seven digs, two service points, nine kills and 14 assists.
Macy Kotzman contributed five kills in the win.
PANTHERS CROWNED SUB-STATE CHAMPS
Three consecutive wins for the Panthers earned them a spot in the state tournament, as they swept Sedan, Madison and host Yates Center en route to being crowned sub-state champs.
SMC got off to a good start with a 2-0 win over Sedan (25-2, 25-4).
Kate Radell was the offensive catalyst in the win with 10 kills and nine digs.
C.J. Stockard led the team in assists with 17 and contributed eight kills, three digs and two aces.
Sophia Piccini also had a big hand in the win with seven digs and two aces.
The Panthers kept the momentum going in the second match, defeating Madison 25-23 and 25-14.
Millie Stockard was the team leader in kills with nine and tallied six digs with five assists.
C.J. Stockard contributed 16 assists, two digs and one ace.
Colgan went on to defeat Yates Center in the championship round by scores of 25-14 and 25-9.
Emily Dechant recorded seven kills, two aces and one dig in the championship round.
Millie Stockard also had a big hand in the win with nine assists, three digs and four kills, while Piccini chipped in eight digs and three aces.
TROJANS FALL SHORT IN TITLE GAME
The Girard Trojans got off to a good start with a 2-1 win over Parsons, but went on to lose to Burlington in two sets in the championship round.
“I’m very proud of the way we finished our season today,” GHS head coach Morgan Crawford said. “We came out ready to play against Parsons and fought hard to win the third. In the first set against Burlington, it was a neck-and-neck game, but we played some unbelievable defense and I think that they were not prepared to see that from us.”
“Shaylun [Grosstephan] and Kynzie [Smith] had some great digs,” Crawford said. “I thought Sydnee [Crain] hit well, as she led our team in kills. Both of my middles also did a great job of adjusting on the fly to Burlington’s fast-paced offense. Unfortunately in the second set, we got stuck in a few rotations and gave up too many points. We grew a ton this year and my players improved tremendously.”
PURPLE DRAGONS BOUNCED IN FIRST ROUND
It was an early exit from the tournament for the host Pittsburg Purple Dragons, who were bounced by Shawnee-Mill Valley in the first round 25-14 and 25-17.
“We struggled with confidence in our hitting, but we didn’t lack in passion,” PHS head coach Megan Mantooth said. “They played hard to the end no matter what the score was.”
Kaitlyn Kidd was the team leader in kills with four, while Laken Robinson led the team assists with 15.
Myla Turner was the defensive anchor with eight digs.
— Jordan Buckamneer is the sports editor of the Pittsburg Morning Sun. E-mail him at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @jbuckmaneer.