November 27, 2013 at 9:41 AM
Here is a very cool honor for Jody DeGroot, who guided Bellarmine Prep of Tacoma to an unbeaten season and second straight Class 4A state volleyball championship:
LEXINGTON, Ky. (November 26, 2013) - The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) is proud to announce that Kim Lauwers, head girls’ volleyball coach at A.J. Dimond High School in Anchorage, Alaska, and Jody DeGroot, head girls’ volleyball coach at Bellarmine Preparatory School in Tacoma, Washington, have been selected as the 2013 AVCA National High School Coaches of the Year.
Led by ninth-year head coach Kim Lauwers, Dimond High School is once again ranked among the top high schools in the state and a perfect 14-0 in conference play (37-3 overall). The Lynx went on another great run in the Alaska Class 4A State Tournament, advancing all of the way to the championship match. Dimond’s Chrisalyn Johnson, Leah Swiss, and Rohyn Huss were named to the All-Tournament Team.
Lauwers also produced three Gatorade Players of the Year during her nine years as head coach, as well as six state appearances, four of which were state championships.
When she took over the volleyball program at Dimond High School in 2005, she revived a team that had been absent from the state tournament for three years. She then steered her team to Alaska state history, winning the State Championship in 2008, 2009, and 2010. This three-year winning streak has only happened once before in Alaska volleyball. In 2010, Lauwers led her team to the upset of undefeated and top-ranked South High School in the championship match.
With an impressive undefeated season this year at 35-0, Jody DeGroot’s Bellarmine Prep volleyball team finished first in their district, first in the Class 4a standings, and a No. 3 ranking in the latest MaxPreps Xcellent 25. The Lions won their second-straight State 4A title and were forced to only one five-set match during the season, and that came in the final match. Bellarmine (22-0) joins Ingraham (1973-74), Kent-Meridian (1978-79), Renton (1980-82), Shadle Park (1984-85), Kentlake (2000-02) and Mead (2003-07) as the only 4A programs to post consecutive State Titles. Several of her players have been on the Preseason All-American and Underclass All-American teams.
After returning to her former high school to teach in 1996, DeGroot began her coaching career as C team and junior varsity coach, where her teams were undefeated for three years. She was named varsity head coach in 2002 and never looked back. During her time at the varsity level, her teams have earned five Narrows League titles and made eight state appearances, three of which resulted in top-ten finishes. In 2012, she coached Bellarmine Prep to their first State Championship, and DeGroot was named the Narrows League Coach of the Year in 2012 as well.
The AVCA will formally present the National High School Coach of the Year awards to Lauwers and DeGroot at the 2013 Jostens Coaches Honors Luncheon in Seattle, Wash., on Thursday, December 19. The luncheon is held in conjunction with the 2013 AVCA Annual Convention.
As a result of winning AVCA National Coach of the Year honors, Lauwers and DeGroot will lead Team East and Team West in the sixth annual Under Armour All-America Volleyball Match & Skills Challenge, Friday, December 20th at Key Arena. Tickets for the Under Armour All-America Volleyball Match & Skills Challenge are on sale now through Ticketmaster.
November 16, 2013 at 8:36 AM
They’re back in action at the 4A state volleyball tournament in Marcus Pavilion at Saint Martin’s University.
We have three consolation matches in progress, all in the second set (my ride-along made me late this morning!). It’s 1-0 for Kentwood over Central Valley, Skyline over Rogers of Puyallup and Bothell over Spanaway Lake.
The losers are out. The winners advance to the trophy round.
I’ll also be tweeting updates @SandyRinger1 and Matt Massey will be tweeting @SeaTimesPreps.
November 15, 2013 at 8:07 AM
Good Morning from Marcus Pavilion on the campus of Saint Martin’s University in Lacey for the Class 4A and 3A state volleyball tournaments.
I will be updating results here as I am able (I’ll be dealing with deadline later this evening). I also will be tweeting @SandyRinger1 and sometimes that’s quicker.
10:13 PM — Hearbreaker for Seattle Prep! Columbia River advances to the semifinals with a 18-16 thriller in the fifth set.
10:02 PM — Seattle Prep fans cheering “Prep! Prep!” and the Mercer Island players are on the sidelines joined in, cheering for their SeaKing District rivals.
10 PM — Mercer Island finishes off Shadle Park, 3-1 (25-13 in the fourth). Now the Islanders will see what they can do against top-ranked Southridge in the semis Saturday.
9:52 PM — River responds, wins the fourth set 25-19, so they’re going to the tiebreaker.
9:30 PM — Seattle Prep survives a back-and-forth battle with Columbia River in the third set, 29-27. The Panthers now lead 2-1.
9:27 PM — Holy Names does it again! The Cougars got hot last year at the right time to reach the semifinals, and they return with a 3-0 sweep of Meadowdale. It was 25-22 in the third.
9:01 PM — I’ts 2-0 Holy Names now over Meadowdale. Columbia River and Seattle Prep are tied at 1-1.
8:43 PM — Shadle Park comes from behind to beat MI in the opening set, Seattle Prel takes the first from Columbia River and Holy Names leads Meadowdale 1-0.
8:23 PM — Writing on deadline now, so can’t keep you posted as frequently. Check The Seattle Times twitter feed, @SeaTimesPreps. We have the other three 3A quarterfinal matches in progress now — Mercer Island vs. Shadle Park, Seattle Prep vs. Columbia River and Meadowdale vs. Holy Names.
8:06 PM — Emerald Ridge completes the sweep of Camas, 25-20, and advances to the semifinals to play Bellarmine Prep.
7:48 PM — Bellarmine continues to roll, closing out the 3-0 win over Snohomish with a 25-12 win in the third. The Lions, defending champs, return to the semifinals Saturday at 1:30 against the ER-Camas winner.
7:28 PM — It’s 2-0 Bellarmine after a 25-17 win in set two. Sorry I can’t update as often as earlier. I’ve got a deadline story to write. In 3A, Southridge is up 1-0 onb Oak Harbor.
7:11 PM — Bellarmine beat Snohomish in the first set, but I missed the score as I was off doing interviews with some Newport folks. Emerald Ridge just beat Camas in the opening set, 25-19.
6:58 PM — Newport’s title chances are alive! The Knights rallied to beat Central Valley 3-2 (15-10 in the fith). They will play Curtis in the semis.
6:44 PM — The other two 4A quarterfinals are about to start: Bellarmine Prep vs. Snohomish and Emerald Ridge vs. Camas. Both of these should be good matches!
6:43 PM — Newport takes CV to a fifth set, winning the fourth 25-18!
6:41 PM — Holy Names closes out Timberline with a 25-18 win in the third. The Metro League is now 2-2 in the tournament.
6:24 PM — Curtis on to the semis with a 3-0 romp past Kentwood (25-8 in the third).
6:22 PM — Newport finishes that third set, 25-19, and closes it to 2-1.
6:20 PM — Curtis in control 17-7 in the third; Newport rallies to lead CV 23-19 in the third.
6:07 PM — Good news about Holy Names as the Cougars lead Timberline 2-0. They took the second set 25-19.
6:06 PM — Kentwood’s in big trouble, too. Curtis leads 2-0 after rallying from 19-15 down to win the second set 25-23.
6:01 PM — Uh-oh, Newport is down 2-0 against CV after dropping the second set, 25-17!
5:40 PM — Curtis finishes off Kentwood, 25-20, for a 1-0 lead. Holy Names takes the first set off Timberline, 25-23.
5:37 PM — Central Valley scores the final seven points to take set one from Newport, 25-17. Curtis leads Kentwood 24-20. Holy Names up 23-22 on Timberline.
5:13 PM — We’re ready for the first two 4A quarterfinals: Kentwood vs. Curtis and Newport vs. Central Valley. And the final first-round 3A match between Holy Names and Timberline is moments away from starting.
5:10 PM — There will be a new 3A state champion as Seattle Prep takes down Prairie, 3-2 (15-9 in the fifth). The Panthers play Columbia River in the quarterfinals at 8: 15 p.m.
5:06 PM — Columbia River advances to the semis with a 3-2 win over Ferndale (15-9 in the fifth). Prep leads Prairie 12-7 in the fifth.
4:55 PM — Seattle Prep lets a 23-18 lead slip away and loses the fourth set to Prairie, 25-23. On to set five.
4:52 PM — Ferndale forces a fifth set with Columbia River with a 25-22 win in the fourth. Prep looking to close it out against Prairie, leading 23-22.
4:39 PM — Kudos to Meadowdale, which knocks off second-ranked University, 3-0! It was 25-19 in the third. Seattle Prep now has a 2-1 lead over Prairie (25-21 in the third), and Columbia River is also up 2-1 on Ferndale after taking the third set, 25-19.
4:04 PM — Everything getting done at the same time, so here’s the scoop: Seattle Prep back in it at 1-1 with Prairie after winning the second set, 27-25; Meadowdale means business and leads University 2-0 after a 25-16 win; Ferndale takes set two from Columbia River so that one is 1-1.
3:47 PM — Meadowdale came to play! Mavs take the first set from No. 2 University, 25-12!
3:40 PM — Columbia River up 1-0 on Ferndale after taking the first set 25-18. U-Hi leads Meadowdale 21-11.
3:15 PM — The Metro League is 0-2 thus far with Eastside Catholic and Bishop Blanchet falling in the first round. Seattle Prep will try to end that trend. The Panthers are ready to serve against Prairie, the defending 3A champion (but with many new faces, and a new coach). Holy Names, the other Metro qualifier, plays Timberline at 5:15 p.m.
3:12 PM — Mercer Island and Shadle Park are through to the quarterfinals and will meet at 8:15 p.m. Both won 3-2. MI took the fourth set off Kennedy, 25-19, while Shadle finished off Auburn Mountainview by the same 25-19 score. JFK and Mountainview play a loser-out match at Timberline at 6:45.
2:48 PM — Auburn Mountainview and Kennedy both win third sets to stay alive. Mountainview won 28-26 over Shadle Park. Kennedy pulled away from Mercer Island, 25-18. But both still traile 2-1.
2:42 PM — Southridge gets the third set, 25-13, to complete the sweep of Blanchet. The Suns now play Oak Harbor in the quarterinals at 6:45 p.m. Blanchet and Eastside Catholic, familiar Metro foes, sqaure off in an elimination match at Timberline High School, also at 6:45 p.m.
2:30 PM — Auburn Mountainview lets a 17-12 lead slip away and falls 25-19 to Shadle Park, which now leads 2-0. MI up 17-9 on JFK in the second set.
2:15 PM — It’s 2-0 Southridge after a 25-22 win in set two against Blanchet.
1:53 PM — Shadle Park pulls out the 25-22 first-set win over Auburn Mountainview. Kennedy leads MI 19-16.
1: 50 PM — Southridge is impressive in a 25-13 opening win over Blanchet! It’s back-and-forth between Shadle and Auburn Mountainview.
1:40 PM — Three more 3A first-round matches are now going. No. 1 Southridge leads Bishop Blanchet, 13-6; No. 3 Shadle Park is tied at 12 with No. 9 Auburn Mountainview and No. 10 Kennedy Catholic leads No. 4 Mercer Island 3-0.
1:35 PM — Eastside Catholic couldn’t mainain the momentum. Oak Harbor takes charge early and takes the fifth set 15-10 to advance to the quarterfinas.
1:20 PM — We’ll go to a fifth set between Eastside Catholic and Oak Harbor as the Crusaders took the fourth, 25-16. OH won the first two sets.
1:12 PM — Snohomish takes the fourth set 25-14 to move on to the quarterfinals. The Panthers will play Bellarmine at 6:45 p.m. Should be a great match.
1 PM — Eastside Catholic stays alive with a 25-19 win in the third set, but still trails Oak Harbor 2-1.
12:52 PM — Snohomish now up 2-1 on Wenatchee after taking the third set, 25-15.
12:38 PM — Eastside Catholic is in trouble. Oak Harbor staves off another comeback and wins 25-23 for a 2-0 lead.
12:32 PM — Wenatchee evens the match with Snohomish, taking the second set 25-18. Bellarmine goes up 2-0 on Rogers with a 25-13 win.
12:14 PM — What a great first set between Eastside Catholic and Oak Harbor! The Crusaders trailed 24-19, then went ahead 25-24. But the Wildcats get the win, 27-25.
12:12 PM — Snohomish finishes off Wenatchee, 25-17, and Bellarmine Prep takes it to Rogers, 25-12.
11:57 AM — And we have the first 3A match of the day with Oak Harbor jumping all over No. 6 Eastside Catholic, 18-9.
11:55 AM — We’re back in action. The final two 4A first-round matches are under way. Top-ranked Bellarmine Prep is up 10-2 early on Rogers of Puyallup. No. 5 Snohomish leads Wenatchee 10-6.
11:12 AM — Here’s something you don’t see very often in a volleyball tournament (especially state): We’re ahead of schedule. The next matches don’t start until 11:45. Those 3-0 matches really speed things up!
11:10 AM — And Emerald Ridge makes it another 3-0 sweep with the 25-20 win over Skyline. The Jags will play Camas in the quarterfinals. That’s a rematch of the third- and fourth-place match at the West Central/Southwest 4A Bi-District tournament, which ER won handily, 3-0. However, Camas was coming off a draining, 3-2 loss to Kentwood only a few minutes earlier. I expect this one to be closer. Skyline must beat Mead to stay alive in the tournament.
11:04 AM — Newport is through to the quarterfinals with a 3-0 win over Spanaway Lake (25-16 in the third). The Knights face Central Valley in the quarterfinals at 5:15 p.m., and that should be interesting. CV smashed Mount Vernon. Spanaway Lake gets Mount Vernon in the consolation round, loser -out.
11 AM — Camas was impressive in sweeping Mead (25-17 in the third). The Papermakers likely will see Emerald Ridge in the quarterfinals. The Knights lead Skyline 20-16 in the third.
10:44 AM — After trailing 18-11, Emerald Ridge rallies to grab the second set off Skyline, 26-24, and leads 2-0.
10:40 AM — Newport rallies down the stretch and takes set two, 25-23, for a 2-0 lead over Spanaway Lake.
10:34 AM — Camas cruising! The Papermakers take set two from Mead, 25-15, and are now up 2-0.
10:16 AM — Emerald Ridge gets it done against Skyline in the opening set, 25-11.
10:15 AM — Newport on the board with a 25-18 first-set win over Spanaway Lake. Camas knocks off Mead, 25-19. ER at set point.
10:09 AM — No. 2 Newport leads Spanaway Lake, 21-16.
10:08 AM — No. 6 Emerald Ridge hot out of the game and leads No. 10 Skyline 18-5.
9:55 AM — Newport-Spanaway Lake and Cams-Mead now under way. Emerald Ridge and Skyline warming up.
9:52 AM — Curtis takes the fourth set from Eisenhower, 25-22 (although the Cadets fought off several match points), and advances to the quarterfinals with a 3-1 victory. It will be Curtis-Kentwood in a 5:15 p.m. semifinal. Eisenhower and Bothell play a loser-out match at 3:15 p.m. at Timberline High School.
9:40 AM — Kentwood advances to the quarterfinals with a 3-1 victory over Bothell. It was 25-18 in the third.
9:24 AM — It was all Curtis in the third set, 25-7. The Vikings lead Ike 2-1 now. Kentwood leads Bothell 9-4 in the fourth, looking to close out the match.
9:18 AM — Bothell gets on the board with a 25-21 win in the second; now trails Kentwood 2-1.
9:06 AM — Central Valley is on to the quarterfinals after taking the third set off Curtis, 25-22.
9:04 AM — Eisenhower is back in this thing with Curtis after winning the second set, 25-22. So, that match is 1-1.
8:53 AM — Kentwood on a roll now and leads Bothell 2-0 after taking the second set, 25-13.
8:34 — Kentwood completes the comeback to take the first set off Bothell, 25-22.
8:32 — Eisenhower suffered a big blow early when Mikel Sydney, the Big 9 co-MVP, went down with an elbow injury. She’s apparently been taken to the ER. No. 9 Curtis leads the Cadets 18-15.
8:30 AM — No. 7 Central Valley rolls past Mount Vernon in the first set, 25-16. Kentwood now leads Bothell 23-22.
8:20 AM — Surprising Bothell off to a great start against third-ranked Kentwood, jumped up 12-4 and 17-11.
First up are the 4A opening-round matches. You can find the schedule, records and a few players to watch (for 4A, 3A and 2A) in my preview boxes that ran in The Times today.
You can also read a short feature I wrote on Kentwood’s Lauren Hackett here.
The WIAA will be tweeting also and updating their brackets for all classificataions, so go here and check the classification you are interested in.
We’ve had the national anthem and are now having the player introductions for the first three 4A matches. If you can’t get down here, follow along!
November 11, 2013 at 4:15 PM
I say it every year, and this one is no different: We’ll know who the real No. 1 volleyball teams in the state for each classification Saturday night.
But I’ve still got my final rankings for you in Class 4A, 3A and 2A.
I’m a big believer in that old adage about there being no sure thing, especially in high-school sports. But I’d have to say Bellarmine Prep and Southridge are the very clear favorites in 4A and 3A, respectively. I’ve had them ranked No. 1 all season. But there are some other quality teams in both fields, and there’s usually an upset or two (or three or more) along the way.
I don’t think Kentwood played its best against the Lions in the championship match of the West Central/Southwest Bi-District tournament. Newport has been on a roll and you can never count Mead out — even without longtime coach Judy Kight. Snohomish is playing very well right now, too, and Emerald Ridge is dangerous.
November 11, 2013 at 2:16 PM
I was starting to think we might not get the state volleyball rankings from the Coaches’ Association until tomorrow, which today is a government holiday.
But they just popped in! These are the final rankings for 2013. And if you check back in an hour or so, you’ll find the final Seattle Times rankings as well.
Here’s how the WSVCA sees it:
|5||Kentwood||5||Cedar Park Christian|
|7||Central Valley (Spokane)||7||Lynden Christian|
|2||University (Spokane)||2||La Conner|
|6||Shadle Park||6||Morton White Pass|
|7||Auburn Mountainview||7||Toutle Lake|
|9||Oak Harbor||9||Tri Cities Prep|
|10||Eastside Catholic||10||White Swan|
|3||West Valley||3||Sunnyside Christian|
|6||Sehome||6||Almira Coulee Hartline|
|7||East Valley (Yakima)||7||Pomeroy|
|9||Washington||9||Moses Lake Christian|
November 10, 2013 at 12:36 PM
I’ve been waiting to see the state volleyball brackets, and they are now available on the WIAA website.
Just click on the classification you are interested in, and it will take you there:
One thing jumps out at me in 4A — the bottom half of the bracket is TOUGH! Not only does it include nationally ranked Bellarmine Prep, the defending champion, but Snohomish, Mead, Emerald Ridge, Camas and Skyline as well. Kentwood and Newport are in the upper half and could potentially meet in the semifinals.
I’ll talk more about that tournament during the week and give you my thoughts on the 3A and 2A tourneys, too.
And be sure to check back tomorrow for the final state rankings.
November 7, 2013 at 4:16 PM
The American Volleyball Coaches Association has announced that Courtney Schwan of Bellarmine Prep and Lanesha Reagan of Snohomish are part of the Under Armour Girls High School All-America Teams.
Schwan, who has signed with Washington, was named to the first team. Reagan, an Oregon State recruit, made the second team. They are the only two players from the state of Washington among the 100 seniors selected
You can find more details, including the entire list of players, here.
November 6, 2013 at 11:14 AM
Four teams clinched berths to the 4A state volleyball tournament yesterday (Tuesday), including upstart Mount Vernon.
The Bulldogs went into the Northwest District tourney seeded fifth, but they knocked off top-seeded Edmonds-Woodway in the semifinals, 3-0, to advance to Thursday’s championship match against Snohomish. The Panthers, ranked No. 7, punched their ticket to state by beating Lake Stevens in the other semifinal, 3-0.
Second-ranked Newport is in after last night’s 3-1 victory over Bothell in the semifinals of the KingCo (District 2) tourney. Skyline also clinched a berth by beating Eastlake in the other semi, 3-0, and plays Newport for the tournament title tomorrow night at Skyline.
Just one more state berth is up for grabs between those two districts, so it will be quite a battle between the eight that remain alive — Eastlake, Ballard, Bothell and Inglemoor on the KingCo side, and E-W, Jackson, Lake Stevens and Monroe on the WesCo side (the No. 3 finishers in each of those tournaments play Saturday for a final berth).
The other 4A district and regional tournaments are this weekend. The biggest of those is the West Central Bi-District event at Kentwood Friday-Saturday, where seven qualifiers will be decided.
Most district tournaments 3A, 2A and the other classifications are also this weekend, although the Sea-King 3A tourney starts tomorrow, and that one should be a dandy.
Your best bet to keep caught up is on the WPA website: http://www.wescoathletics.com/tournament.php?act=index&league=3
November 4, 2013 at 4:35 PM
Upsets? Sure, there were a few in the Washington prep volleyball world over the past week. Shockers? Not really, in my book.
There are few sure things in high-school sports as far as I’m concerned.
But probably the biggest eyebrow raiser came in the championship match of the KingCo 3A tournament, where unranked Mount Si knocked off No. 2 Mercer Island, 3-2. The Islanders, whose only other loss of the season came against Newport (now ranked No. 2 in 4A), had beaten the Wildcats twice in league play by 3-0 counts.
But as Mount Si coach Bonnie Foote said when she called to tell me about the upset Saturday night, “It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish!”
As you might recall, I had the Wildcats ranked No. 2 to start the season (with MI third), thanks largely to hard-hitting Lindsay Carr, but they struggled early on. The Islanders had been consistent all season, and I’m betting they go into the Sea-King District tournament all fired up. I’m taking a big-picture approach to them in this week’s rankings and only dropping them a few spots to No. 5.
Mount Si remains on the watch list, and watch out! I would have loved to have found a spot for them. Instead, I rewarded Eastside Catholic for the Metro League championship (and second win of the season over previously ranked Seattle Prep). The Crusaders jump in at No. 7.
November 4, 2013 at 8:12 AM
We’re down to the final two weeks of the season for prep volleyball!
There were some interesting regular-season and playoff matches last week, which I’m mulling over as I put together The Seattle Times rankings for Class 4A, 3A and 2A. Check back this afternoon for those.
But first up is the version from the Washington State Volleyball Coaches Association, for all classifications:
|5||Auburn Riverside||5||Annie Wright|
|6||Central Valley (Spokane)||6||Freeman|
|10||Camas||10||Cedar Park Christian|
|2||University (Spokane)||2||Toutle Lake|
|6||Auburn Mountainview||6||Tri Cities Prep|
|8||Mt. Si||8||Northwest Christian (Lacey)|
|9||Eastside Catholic||9||Northwest Christian (Colbert)|
|10||Mercer Island||10||White Swan|
|6||Ellensburg||6||Almira Coulee Hartline|
|9||Pullman||9||Moses Lake Christian|
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