A hard-hitting Lake Roosevelt volleyball squad spoiled Liberty Bell’s first playoff appearance in six years, humbling the Lady Lions 3-0 Saturday (Nov. 2) in their home gym.
The loss put Liberty Bell, the league’s second seed in the district tournament, into the third-place match against Waterville/Mansfield on Tuesday night (Nov. 5) in Brewster.
Liberty Bell and Waterville/Mansfield split the two matches they played this season, although Liberty Bell won 3-0 in the more-recent contest on Oct. 12.
Win or lose on Tuesday, Liberty Bell is headed to Wenatchee High School on Thursday (Nov. 7) to play one match against a team from the 2B Eastern Washington Athletic Conference. A win Thursday sends the Lady Lions to the state 2B volleyball tournament, Nov. 14-15 in Yakima.
Liberty Bell last played in the state volleyball tournament in 2009.
As the No. 2 seed last Saturday, the Lady Lions had the advantage of a bye in the tournament bracket. No. 3 Lake Roosevelt, meanwhile, had to get past sixth-seed Tonasket in a first-round match played earlier that evening.
Liberty Bell may have hoped Lake Roosevelt would be fatigued after the extra match, but the Raiders hardly broke a sweat in a 25-7, 25-18, 25-17 win over the Tigers.
If the Lady Lions were to take advantage of any lull in the Raiders’ game, it would have been in game 2. Liberty Bell lost the first game, 11-25, but took an early 5-1 lead in game 2, on the strength of a Jadyn Mitchell kill and aces by Hailey Dammann and Caitlyn Cooley.
Late in the second game, a Mitchell block started a six-point Liberty Bell run that cut the Raiders’ lead to 21-23. Liberty Bell fans loudly urged their team on, but the Raiders won the next two points to take the game.
In game 3, Liberty Bell fell into an early 11-3 hole thanks to brutal serving by Lake Roosevelt senior Mikaylah Thompson. The match ended 11-25, 21-25, 18-25.
“Lake Roosevelt showed up and played a great match with very few errors on their side,” Liberty Bell coach Christine Scott said. “But we always look to the next match and figure out how we can do better.”
Mitchell was a force at net against Lake Roosevelt, with nine kills and eight blocks. Ellie Blank added four kills and served well, Scott said. Hannah Bakke contributed two kills and a block.