SENECA - The Seneca volleyball team started the tournament trail hosting the DeSoto Pirates. The Indians were able to handle the Pirates in three straight sets, 25-8, 25-12, 25-14.
At the net, Seneca was led by a strong performance by Liv Swanson, who had 21 kills. Haley Wall had six kills, while Erin Sime, Olivia Payne and Emily Garfoot each recorded five kills. Michelle Clark had three kills and McKenna Greene and Corrine Lenzendorf each had one kill.
Senior Seneca setter Emily Garfoot got to the ball and brought up 40 assists for the night.
Digging up six DeSoto hits was libero Alivia Salinas. Wall and Sime each had two digs.
Behind the line, Wall served 22-24 with six aces, Garfoot 16-17 with six aces, Greene 12-12 with one ace, Salinas 10-10, Hannah Whiteaker 8-8, Sime 4-4 with one ace and Corrine Lenzendorf serving 2-2.
Next up for the Indians was Highland. The Cardinals traveled to Seneca for a second round regional match. Seneca took care of the Cardinals in three sets, 25-16, 25-11, 25-21.
“We were not playing some of our best volleyball in the third set,” Seneca coach Dawn Ray said later of the match.
Leading the Indians again at the net was liv Swanson with 16 kills. Garfoot had eight kills and Olivia Payne had six kills, while Wall and Sime each added five kills.
Setting up the hitters with 31 assists was Seneca setter Emily Garfoot.
Behind the line, Garfoot and Greene each served 13-13 with four and one ace respectively. Whiteaker was 10-10 with one ace, Salinas was 9-11 with three aces, while Wall was 17-18 with three aces.
Southwestern arrived for the regional final match at Seneca.
“We knew nothing much about Southwestern other than they were the #4 seed and had a couple tall middles,” coach Ray explained later. “We just had to come into this game playing our hearts out to continue our journey.”
Game 1 was a back-and-forth, spike-for-spike and dig-for-dig game until the score was 15-15. That’s when Seneca came on strong and won Game 1--25-16. From there, the Indians rolled on to to take Games 2 and 3--25-15, 25-17.
“The girls were playing some great volleyball and having fun while doing it,” Ray said.
The Indians were led at the net by Liv Swanson with 15 kills. Wall brought had six kills, while Garfoot and Sime each had five kills and Payne added 3 kills.
Seneca setter Emily Garfoot had 29 assists for the night.
Seneca serving was very strong in this match. Garfoot and Greene were 16-16 and with two aces each while Salinas was 13-13, Wall was 11-12, Sime was 8-9 and Whiteaker was 7-7.
The Seneca Indians were able to capture their second regional title in as many years.
On Thursday, the Indians will travel to Belmont to take on Benton Zephyrs in a rematch of last year’s sectional semifinal match.
The Indians already played the Zephyrs in their in the championship match of their own Seneca Classic Tournament in the second week of September. Benton came out on top in that one 25-21, 13-25, 17-16.
However, Seneca was able to hold the higher seed in the recent WIAA seeding meeting making the Benton coach upset, according to Ray.
“So my girls know we have had a target on our backs all season and now this target has gotten huge and we know Benton is a good team and their coming for us,” coach Ray said of the impending match with the Zephyrs. “So we need to be playing our hearts out to continuse this journey.”