Western Tech junior Beatrice Daudelin reeled off nine straight service points to give Western Tech (17-2) a 9-0 lead in the first set and the Wolverines carried the momentum to a four-set victory over Lackey, 25-16, 25-17, 20-25, 25-15 in the Class 1A state volleyball semifinals at College Park.
Both teams were playing in the state tournament for the third time.
Western Tech will be playing in the state finals for the first time when they play Clear Spring on Tuesday, Nov. 20 at 6 p.m.
Lackey (5-13) ended Daudelin’s run with a kill by Madison Kuhn.
Lackey pulled within two, 10-8, before Anisah Weaver’s kill stemmed the tide. An ace by Carley Boarman made it 12-8.
But, Lackey hung tight and trailed 16-13 before a hitting error gave the Wolverines a side out and Rachael Durham reeled off five straight points, with three aces from the service line for a 22-13 lead.
A back row kill by Boarman ended the set.
Daudelin finished with a team-high seven aces, but it was her run in the first set that set the tone.
“The past few games I’ve been a little off, but (Coach Eric) Jett really practiced us hard serving and he noticed and I think I got it back in practice and I brought it in that first set,” Daudelin said.
The Wolverines rallied from a 7-3 deficit in the second set to take an 8-7 lead as Boarman contributed three aces.
Avaion Barry added three consecutive aces to extend the lead and they pulled away for the victory.
Lackey, who was led by Miky Alves (seven kills, 10 assists) and Madison Kuhn (six kills, five aces), captured the third set, before the Wolverine closed it out in the final set when Maya Thurston served out the final five points.
Durham led the Wolverines with 12 kills in the match and Ray (six), Boarman (five), Sheri Aduwemi (four) and Daudelin (three) contributed the the attack.
Ray (14 digs) and Boarman (11 digs) led the defense and Durham added four aces.
“Our goal every year is to be playing our best volleyball by the playoffs,” said Jett, in his 18th season as head coach. “We play a lot of big schools in Baltimore County and we play a lot of good schools in our scrimmages and the tournament that we go to and our goal is, two and a half months after we start, we know who we are and we are playing the best we can.”
The Wolverines’ 17-2 record is the best in school history.