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Viking volleyball kills quarterfinals

Becky Regan / Tahoe Daily TribuneDrew Norberg flies above the net to slam a kill in Game 2 of South Tahoe's 3-0 win over Spring Creek in the quarterfinals Tuesday.

Becky Regan / Tahoe Daily TribuneDrew Norberg flies above the net to slam a kill in Game 2 of South Tahoe's 3-0 win over Spring Creek in the quarterfinals Tuesday.

Drew Norberg stretched a good two feet above the net before she slammed the ball down hard enough to scare the kneepads off most high school volleyball players.

To Spring Creek’s credit, the girls stood their ground while Viking volleyball bullets rained down, but there was no stopping the Vikings Tuesday. South Tahoe swept the quarterfinals 3-0 as the girls continue their push toward championships.

Norberg delivered devastating kill after kill, connecting with 15-of-25. It’s a beat of one second between Norberg’s kills and the floor.

“She hits the bajeebers out of the ball,” South Tahoe coach Dan Mclaughlin said, “but give Spring Creek credit. They didn’t back down and stood in there and took everything she was giving them.”

Not an easy task, considering South Tahoe went 31-for-59 on kills and delivered 17 aces, all while limiting service errors to seven over three games.

Bailey David was a large chunk of those staggering serving stats.

“Bailey was on fire,” setter Raquel Marchesseault said.

David set a blistering pace in Game 1 with serves that sent Spring Creek scrambling. The senior served 18 straight points, taking the Vikings from 2-4 to 20-4. She walked away with nine aces and five digs.

“Bailey just found weaknesses and exploited them. She served like the veteran volleyball player that she is,” McLaughlin said.

David’s serves found Spring Creek holes, and Morgan Kaufer delivered a well-placed tip to close Game 1 with a tone-setting 25-11 win.

Kaufer, also one of the best hitters in the league, has a knack for dropping key tips and stunning kills at those crucial moments. The senior went 8-for-12 on kills and missed just one all night. She also contributed two aces and four digs.

“Bailey had her passes on. Morgan was putting her kills down, but no one played bad. Everyone played on the same level,” Marchesseault said.

Spring Creek hitters started hitting its stride in Game 2, but the Vikings keep a clean backcourt.

“The whole secret to the game was that we passed the ball well to Raquel,” McLaughlin said. “We had 12 digs and every one of those digs we turned into points.”

David, Kaila Griffis and Jade Child dug up some big hits while South Tahoe’s setters Marchesseault and Hannah Neiger flew across the setter’s box to handle any pass that came their way.

“What can you say about a setter who ended up with two kills, five aces, 27 assists and a dig?” McLaughlin asked of Marchesseault.

Not much because the Vikings’ 25-10 win in Game 2 speaks loud enough.

Meanwhile, Emily Gardner was coming through at the net. In her first year on the team, Gardner is already a crucial part of South Tahoe’s blocking and offensive attack.

But there wasn’t a Viking player who wasn’t coming though Tuesday.

“We just connected and there was no anxiety,” Griffis said.

The Spring Creek hung in until the final point, but Dominique Daniels shut it down when she slammed the final serve over the net. South Tahoe took Game 3 with a 25-11 win to cement the semifinal trip.

“No. 9 (Norberg) hits lights out, and we couldn’t catch up” Spring Creek coach Jorge Zatary said. “Our effort wasn’t lacking and our hustle was there, but we definitely can play better volleyball than that.”

With the win, South Tahoe (8-3) advances to semifinals at home against Fernley (9-2) on Saturday at 11:40 a.m. A win against Fernley would guarantee the girls a trip to state, but it will be a tough match.

“Fernley’s probably got the top athlete in all of Nevada on the team,” McLaughlin said. “She can touch about 10 feet.”

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