Bel Air girls win region volleyball title, states next

The Bel Air girls volleyball team won the Class 3A North region championship in familiar fashion Friday night over visiting Towson. The Bobcats won in three games, 25-10, 25-17 and 26-24.

The win kept the Bobcats perfect at 18-0 and puts them in a Wednesday state semifinal in College Park against North Hagerstown (16-1). Match time is 6 p.m.

In the win, the Bobcats led in game one, 11-6, forcing a Towson timeout. Out of the timeout, Bel Air's lead jumped to 18-7, forcing another timeout. The Bobcats continued to roll out of that timeout too, scoring seven of the next 10 points for the win.

Tia Williams was big in that first game, aiding in the Bobcats ability to pull away. Williams finished with 12 kills and two aces, and had the final points by kill in games one and two.

Celeste Roland also had a big night, with 15 kills, eight digs and 15 perfect passes. Roland's play allowed the Bobcats to pull away in game two as the game was tied at 8.

The Bobcats scored the next four points to cause another Towson timeout and after the pause, the score jumped to 17-8 and another timeout.

Bel Air's lead climbed to 21-10 en route to the 25-17 win.

In game three, Bel Air and Towson matched each other, until the Bobcats pulled away and led, 22-15. Towson, though, rallied and drew even at 24 before the Bobcats scored the next two points and swept the match.

Amanda Rodriguez finished with 30 assists and two aces and Jackie DeLuise added five kills and three aces. Kaila Gonzalez had four kills and two blocks and Rien Hachmann added three aces.

Outstanding back row defense came from Kendall Daley and Consuelo Ezcurra, who combined for 13 digs and 18 perfect passes, according to head coach Tim Markland.

"I would like to publicly thank all of our families and friends who came out to show their support tonight and throughout the season," Markland said.

Bel Air's trip to the state semis will be the fourth in school history and first since 1999. The Bobcats have never reached the state finals.

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