Lady Cats Advance To PIAA State Volleyball Title Match With Total Team Effort In Semifinal Victory Over Bishop Canevin (Posted 11/18/20)

(Photos by Nate Girvan) Above: Let the celebration begin!

District Nine Champion and number 1 ranked Clarion Area turned in another remarkable team performance in securing a 25-14, 25-15, 25-14 victory over the homestanding District 7 (WPIAL) Champion and number 2 ranked Bishop Canevin Lady Crusaders, in the PIAA State Volleyball Class-A Semifinals on Tuesday (November 17th). With the victory, the Lady Cats advance to the State Championship match, at 10:30AM this Saturday, as they face District 11 Champion and number 3 ranked Marian Catholic at Cumberland Valley High School in Mechanicsburg.

“Air Korrin”

As has been the case, in a season that has seen the (23-0) Bobcats drop only one set, Clarion seemed to be in charge throughout the match. And has been the team’s modus operandi throughout the campaign, they had solid play from Brenna Campbell’s solid setting, Korrin Burns’, Erica Selfridge on blistering kills, Jordan Best with her digs, strong play at the net by Aryana Girvan, Payton Simko… and on and on. I haven’t listed everyone, but don’t worry, Coach Shari Campbell pretty much, covers that in her comments below.

Selfridge started game one off with two service points, moving the Cats out to a 2-0 lead. After a series of sideout exchanges by both teams with a service point each by Campbell and Best mixed in, the Cats were up 10-6. Selfridge the stepped to the line and delivered on six straight service points, moving Clarion to a ten-point 16-6 lead.  An 8-7 Clarion run, finished off by a tip by Campbell secured the Set 1 win, with a number of points being won by strong kills. Burns had a service point and Best had two service points during the run.

Erica setting up to make a play on the ball

Bishop Canevin opened the second set with a 3-0 lead with Kyla Hartoya serving. The Bobcats fought back to take an 11-7 point lead after following five straight service points from Girvan, the first being an ace and several of the points coming on kills by Selfridge. The set ended with two service points from Selfridge, an ace on the first and with the aid of a Campbell kill on the game winner.

 Selfridge continued her run, with five straight service points to open the final set. Then a 10-7 Lady Cat run culminated by a five service point run by Best, put Clarion up 15-7. And another 10-7 Clarion run sealed the victory. Selfridge and Simko each had two service points during the run. The final point came as a Crusaders’ shot went long.

Lady Cats on De-Fense

The Lady Cats individual stats attest to the match being an absolute team victory. Campbell dished out 32 assists, to go along with 8 digs, 4 points and three kills. Selfridge registered 18 points (6 aces), 16 kills and thirteen digs.

Girvan came in with 10 digs, 5 points (1 ace) and three kills. Best contributed 10 points (2 aces) and ten digs. Burns recorded 16 kills, 3 points and three digs. Simko had 4 points, 4 kills and an assist. Ava Kiser had three digs and Adia Needham registered a kill.

Happy Coaches Sammi Beichner and Shari Campbell, with jubilant manager Hayden Quinn in the background, after the match was won

Coach Campbell shared about the teamwork that went into the victory. “This win was truly gratifying because this team has put in so much work and has had such unwavering focus. They deserve to celebrate! So much positive happened though the efforts of them all.”

And about the different individual performances. “Brenna set an amazing match and her leadership was commanding in the gym. Erica Selfridge put Bishop Canevin on their heels from the net to the service line. Korrin Burns matched Erica kill for kill, and that was a great thing to watch if you love the game of volleyball.

“Jordan Best put in what I consider her best performance to date and look for more from her on Saturday.  Payton Simko and Adia Needham put up an intimidating block. Payton also made great contributions from the service line. 

It was great to watch Aryana Girvan record 10 digs. We typically see her make big contributions at the net, and tonight it was her defense and serving that put us ahead in set 2. 

Ava Kiser contributed 3 digs off the bench.” 

And of the TEAM these girls display, Coach Campbell said, “From top to bottom this roster puts in their best efforts when no one is watching. They push each other and all of their success is because of this one team mindset.”