Green Valley looked every bit the part of a previous state champion Friday night.
After giving up a two sets to none lead, last year’s Class 4A state champions recovered to beat Bishop Manogue 25-11, 25-18, 22-25, 23-25, 15-10 in a Division I state semifinal match Friday night at Galena.
“That’s been our goal all year long,” said Green Valley coach Erin Hill. “We’re going to give it our all in the state championship match.”
Green Valley (33-4) will face Spanish Springs (36-7) at 4 p.m. today.
Hill said she believed the Gators were playing well, even as Manogue was coming back from the 2-0 deficit.
“We let up a little bit on our serving and let Manogue get into their offense, and it’s 11:30, both teams are out of gas,” Hill said. “But each time they brought it, we kept coming back.”
The Gators continued to feed hitters Carly Scheiss and Nikki Drost, who rewarded them time and again with crucial points, and the Gators put up a solid block against Manogue’s front line.
“We blocked very well, especially the first two games, and that was the key,” Hill said. “In the fifth set, it was just a dogfight.”
In the other semifinal, Bishop Gorman couldn’t complete a comeback from a 2-0 deficit, as Spanish Springs posted a 25-18, 25-21, 12-25, 19-25, 17-15 win.
“Obviously we didn’t play our best the first two games,” Gorman coach Ed Van Meetren said. “I don’t know if our block was a little early or a little late, it’s hard to say.”
Van Meetren said he switched the libero from the middle back to the left back to counter Spanish Springs’ attack, and that change spurred the Gaels’ offense.
“That allowed us to get some balls up, but the last couple of swings, the passes were off,” he said.