Centralia 3, Black Hills 1 (25-20, 26-24, 22-25, 25-21)
(Centralia, WA) Both teams came into this match with a lot to play for but it was the home team Tigers who came out on top. Black Hills was 6-1 and a game behind Tumwater for the league title and needed to win out to keep that opportunity to knock off the defending State Champions and share the league title.
Centralia came in with a 3-4 record and game behind WF West for 3rd. This is a huge difference when it comes to districts as the 4th place team will have to play the 5th place team from the GSHL in a play-in game just to get in the tournament and have to face Woodland in the opening round.
In the 1st set it was dead even at 10-10 but then Centralia began to pull away. Danika Jensen served up a couple of points with the help of Rachel Wilkerson with one of her mammoth kill shots. The Tigers stretched their 2 point 18-16 lead with Chelsea Petrino and Kylie Sharp both coming up with some big points and when Sharp was finished Centralia led 23-18 and they finished with a 25-20 set win.
The Wolves jumped on the Tigers in set 2 and led 4-1 but Centralia settled in quickly and clawed their way back into it and took the lead on a crazy dig save from Joelle Mettler that gave Centralia their 1st lead in the set 9-8 and they never lost the lead again. This also was named our ProActive Physical Therapy Play of the Game.
The Wolves did make a big run late with Ainslee Eberle scoring 5 straight points with the help of Maisy Williams at the net to tie the match at 23. Jensen for Centralia pulled out the win serving the winning point that the Wolves could not return for the 26-24 win and a commanding 2-0 lead.
The Wolves were not ready to give up and came back strong in the 3rd set behind the serving of Kailie Storm who took-over at the service line with a 14-13 lead and when she was finished the Wolves were up 20-14. The Tigers did not fold up as Mckenna Smith reeled off 6 straight points of her own to tie it up and certainly the momentum shifted to the Tigers. But Black Hills were not about to get swept and dug down to pull out the win.
The Tigers then fired right back and were not ready to waste the hard work they put in to get the jump on the very talented Wolves and did not want to risk having to go to a 5th and deciding set. Wilkerson belted another kill shot to pull Centralia into an 8-8 tie. Mckenna Smith had 3 huge blocks in this set to help push the Tiger lead to as many as 6 giving them plenty of breathing space cruising to the 25-21 win and taking the match 3-1.
Black Hills falls to 6-1 in league play with 2 play finishing against WF West and Tumwater while the Tigers are now 4-4 and wrap up their season with Aberdeen and WF West. Our Pacific Sports Spa Players of the Game were Centralia’s Mckenna Smith and Black Hills’ Kailia Storm.