The Vikings had it in them to win. The girls proved it in Game 2 and 4 with resounding wins over Lowry.
But the South Tahoe volleyball team couldn’t keep the consistency alive through Game 5, and lost the match 19-25, 25-19, 12-25, 25-16 and 11-15.
The teams were evenly matched in Game 1, tying the score four times in the first 18 points. Once the score hit 9-9, however, Lowry started to pull ahead. A few South Tahoe errors combined with strong hitting from Lowry’s Rachel Sigurdson, Payton Naveran and Jillian Allbright gave the Buckaroos a five-point lead. Lowry held onto the edge, and two out-of-bounds balls on the final three points gave Lowry a 25-19 win.
The Vikings bounced back to claim Game 2. Again the girls were evenly matched, tying the score four times, but this time South Tahoe gave a final push. Hannah Neiger served five unanswered points, setter Raquel Marshesseault added some well-placed tips and Sierra Fulton delivered the final kill in the Vikings’ 25-19 win.
By the end of the night, Neiger racked up five aces and three kills on the night. Marshesseault collected 17 digs, one ace and two kills. Fulton finished the match with 22 digs, three aces and two kills.
The Game 3 momentum swung back in Lowry’s favor. The Buckaroos took control of the game early and never let up. Juliana Velasco and Sigurdson delivered the final hits for a 25-12 win.
The resounding Game-3 win seemed to shake the Vikings out of their lull in the next round. South Tahoe’s Kendhyl Delacour started delivering devastating hits to give South Tahoe a commanding lead. Kaila Griffis added a kill to take the Vikings to 24-15, and the Buckaroos committed a service error cement the score at 25-16.
Delacour led the Vikings with 18 kills, four aces and six digs. Griffis contributed 25 digs and nine kills.
“The team that played Game 4 could win the zone tournament,” South Tahoe coach Dan McLaughlin said. “If we decide to step up and be that team with composure we can do it.”
The win all came down to the fifth and final game. The last time these two teams met, the match went to five games and South Tahoe took the win. This time, Lowry evened the score.
The Buckaroos came out hitting hard. Jade Child delivered emergency hits from the back row to keep South Tahoe in the game, but errors ended up costing the Vikings a 15-11 final game and the match.
“It’s a coaches job to find a way to make the team successful so I’m doing something wrong,” McLaughlin said after the match. “We have to find a way to do something different if we want to be successful.”
The Vikings are now 3-5 in league, but still in the playoff hunt. The top four teams earn a trip to postseason.
UP NEXT: The Vikings will host Elko at 6 p.m. Friday and Spring Creek at 11 a.m. Saturday.
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