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Potsdam girls claim Class C volleyball title; FA denies Massena in B final

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MASSENA - The Potsdam Central girls volleyball team didn’t let OFA take advantage of a strong start on Wednesday in the Section 10 Class C Championship Match.

“We played very, very well in the first set and in the second set we gave them another run for their money but in the third set, we got a little gun shy and Potsdam took control,” noted OFA coach Sue McLean after the Lady Sandstoners fashioned a hard-working sweep over her squad at the Massena High School gym to earn their second sectional title in three years.

Along with earning a trip to the NYSPHSAA Class C tournament with the win, the Lady Sandstoners advanced to the Section 10 Overall Championship which will be staged on Monday, starting with a semi-final matchup at 4 p.m. between Potsdam and Class B champion Franklin Academy of Malone, which outlasted Massena Central in five sets in the sectional final played at the Potsdam Central gym on Wednesday. The winner of that match will then go up against undefeated Class D champion Chateaugay in the overall final which is scheduled to start shortly after the All-NAC Awards presentations set to take place following the first match of the night. Chateaugay stopped Edwards-Knox in four sets in the second sectional final of the night at the Massena gym.

All three Section 10 class victors have punched their tickets to state play and will take on the respective winners from Section 7 at the Massena Central gym next Wednesday. The Class C match will begin at 3:30 p.m., the D tilt is scheduled to begin at 5:30 and the Class B matchup is slated to start at 7:30 p.m.

Potsdam 3, OFA 0: “Both teams wanted this so badly and there were a lot of nerves on both sides at the beginning. Volleyball is a game of mistakes and both teams made their fair share of them. The important thing for us is we picked it up and overcame them,” said coach Julia Pahler after the Lady Sandstoners rallied to take the opening set 25-23 then used strong finishes to win the next two by scores of 25-19, 25-16.

“We played Ogdensburg three times this year and we never had any easy sets against them. I’m just very proud of the way we were able to keep it together after getting off to a bit of a rough start,” she added. “We set few goals for ourselves before the season and this was definitely one of them.”

The Lady Blue Devils were the steadier of the two teams from the service line to start the match and worked their way to a 14-9 lead after junior Emma Hart delivered four straight points. But that turned out to be the final OFA run of the set as the Lady Sandstoners steadily battled back, taking their first lead at 20-19 when a serve by senior Miranda Mangual led to a ball hit into the net. Potsdam eventually went ahead 24-21 on a service error before completing their comeback when an OFA player was called for a net violation to make it 25-23.

The teams traded leads through the early stages of the second set with OFA going ahead 8-5 after a four-point run served up by freshman Taylor Perry but Potsdam countered with a five-point run off the service of senior Katie Burke to take an 11-9 lead and never looked back in posting the 25-19 win.

The Lady Devils opened the third set by taking a 3-1 lead but junior Elna Daby produced some precision serving to key a six-point run that put the Lady Sandstoners ahead 8-4 and they never looked back as junior Sarah Vivlamore served out the set and the match with an ace.

Daby finished with a team-high 12 points, including three aces, as the Lady Sandstoners improved to 16-2. Vivlamore generated 38 sets, nine assists, seven points, two blocks and one ace. Mangual tallied seven points, six kills, one ace and one block. Burke also logged seven points along with a handful of kills. Senior Victoria Mondragon chipped in six points, four kills and two aces. Senior Erica Mason served up four points, including one ace.

For OFA, junior Emma Hart generated 10 assists, seven points, three aces, three kills and three digs. Taylor Perry contributed 12 assists, 10 digs, six points and three kills, Sky Hoover contributed 13 digs and two kills while senior Paige Perry worked the court for seven kills and three digs. Also aiding the Lady Blue Devil effort were; senior Taylor Fisher (4 points, 3 aces, 3 kills, 2 blocks, 2 digs), senior Adrianna Compo (6 points, 6 kills, 4 digs) and senior Jessie Logan (4 digs).

“I am really proud of these girls, they never quit when they could have packed it in,” noted coach McLean after her team finished the year at 13-5.

“I have been blessed at OFA to coach so many quality girls and I will really miss this year’s seniors.”

Malone 3, Massena 2: The top-seeded Lady Huskies held off the second-seeded Lady Raiders 22-25, 25-28, 25-13, 25-23, 25-20 to claim the Class B title. Rachel Lamica delivered 32 kills and 15 points to lead Malone. Massena was paced by the service effort of Krista Loran’s 18 points while Sam Villnave had eight kills.

Chateaugay 3, E-K 1: The Chateaugay girls needed four sets to eliminate the Lady Cougars winning the first two sets 25-16 and 25-8. The emotional lift left the Bulldogs as the Cougars rallied to win the third set 25-19 before CCS readjusted and closed out the match with a 25-20 win in the fourth set.

Kendra King and Kylie Hanley led the Bulldogs with 12 service points each. King served up five aces while Hanley had three aces and led the floor play with 25 assists.

NOTE: Malone Telegram Sports Editor John Gokey contributed to this article.

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