Just about everything that could go right did go right for Three Forks in the first two sets Thursday afternoon at Huntley Project High School.
The Wolves got off to a hot start en route to posting victories of 25-17 and 25-19 against Baker in a first round match at the Southern B Divisional. But the Spartans rallied to win the next three 25-23, 25-17, 15-11 to advance to the quarterfinals.
“We came out hungry the first two sets,” said Three Forks coach Tracy Welter. “Paeton (Ohs) was on fire with her attacks we had tons of aces and very little errors. Keaton (Lynn) started to get the timing on her blocks and everyone was in sync.”
Ohs finished the contest with a season-high 16 kills and 23 digs, while Lynn tallied a career-high 10 blocks. But things quickly fell apart for the Wolves in the third set.
“I think we became complacent starting the third set and began to play too safe and not aggressive. We then found ourselves playing on our heels trying to catch up,” said Welter. “But I have to hand it to Baker. They could of rolled over and taken a quick loss, but that’s not what good teams do. They battled hard and aggressive.
“We started pushing too much. We ended with only 30 kills for five sets. Not too high of a number, and I’m guessing 20 came from the first two sets.”
Erin Welter had five kills and 16 digs for the Wolves, while Macey Combs added 20 digs and a pair of aces.
With the loss, Three Forks (10-10) needs to win three times Friday in order to reach the consolation match and clinch a berth to next week’s state tournament. That long road begins with a loser-out match against conference rival Manhattan at noon.
Defending champs sweep Tigers
Manhattan was swept by unbeaten and defending state Class B champion Huntley Project. The Red Devils posted a 25-8, 25-8, 25-7 victory Thursday afternoon.
“It was tough,” first-year Manhattan coach Charli Chapman said. “Huntley played well, served aggressively and swung big.”
The Tigers (9-11) finished with just nine kills in the match, led by five from Emma Wass, and never got the offense on track.
“It was definitely not our game,” said Chapman. “We blocked very poorly, which affected our defense greatly. Serve-receive was weak with too many errors and not enough in system passes. To top it off our setter got called for more doubles than she has all season combined.“
Manhattan (9-11) needs to win three times on Friday to reach Saturday’s third place match and clinch a berth to next week’s state tournament. It begins with a loser-out match against Three Forks at noon.
“We’re hoping for a long day tomorrow,” said Chapman.
Baker def. Three Forks 17-25, 19-25, 25-23, 25-17, 15-11.
THREE FORKS (10-10) – Kills: 30 (Paeton Ohs 16). Digs: 90 (Ohs 23, Macey Combs 20). Blocks: 13 (Keaton Lynn 10). Aces: 17 (Erin Welter 6, Ohs 5). Assists: 27 (Kyle Olson 26).
BAKER – Stats not reported.
Huntley Project def. Manhattan 25-8, 25-8, 25-7.
MANHATTAN (9-11) – Kills: 9 (Emma Wass 5). Digs: 19 (Matilda Dietz 7, Cayli Chapman 4). Blocks: 0. Aces: 5 (Dietz 3, Chapman 2). Assists: 8 (Chapman 6).
HUNTLEY PROJECT – Stats not provided.