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Volleyball team stays on target for a home qualifier match

Sandy sweeps Milwaukie on the road to stay in the middle of the NWOC pack


by: SANDY POST: DAVID BALL - Sandys Jenny Covington puts up a block in the middle during the second set Thursday. MILWAUKIE — The Sandy volleyball team turned away a threat in the middle set Thursday night to sweep Milwaukie 25-10, 25-18, 25-12 and return to .500 in NWOC action.

The Pioneers got out to a blistering start, building a 17-4 lead in the first set highlighted when Alex Ford buried a kill into the back row and followed with three quick service points. Teammate Kayla Anderson closed out the opener with a run of her own, getting an ace off her jump serve on set point.

Milwaukie showed signs of life in the second set, scoring the first four points and maintaining a slim lead into the middle stages of play after Alyson Andreasen-Williams sent a clean winner down the line.

But Sandy erased the deficit with a six-point service run by McKenzie Nolin, tying the score when Jenny Covington waited on a Mustangs’ block to fall before tipping a winner over the top. By the end of the spurt, Sandy found itself ahead 14-11 and would never turn back.

Allie Crane sent a kill between two Milwaukie blockers to extend the gap to 19-13, and Paige Eisert kept the momentum going with a diving dig out of the back row that carried over the net and dropped on the other side.

Set point came quickly when Anderson passed the ball into the front row where setter Jordan Hall popped the ball across the court, leaving Eisert a clean look at a cross-court kill.

“We had our seniors out there for the entire second set, which left us with some players out of position,” Sandy coach Chris Meyers said. “It was a chance to have some fun and just go play. It took us a second to get things down, but it’s a smart group and once we figured it out we were able to break them.”

Sandy doubled up the Mustangs in the final set to make it a quick night.

Anderson led the Pioneers with 10 digs, seven kills and four aces, while Ford pounded out six kills. Covington had 10 digs, while Jordan Hall had four aces and Bekah Mather made two blocks.

The Pioneers end the week fifth in the NWOC with a 6-6 record and 14th in the RPI rankings. Staying among the top 16 would allow Sandy to host a play-in qualifier match.

“We’re playing good volleyball and getting that playoff mentality,” Meyers said. “We’re on target to host a postseason match and to have a legitimate shot at moving on — that’s an exciting thing.”

Sandy ends the regular season Thursday at Rex Putnam.

View a photo gallery of the match at daveball.exposuremanager.com.