YAKIMA — Coming off her team’s first loss of the season to someone other than King’s Way Christian, coach Kelly Adams challenged her Seton Catholic volleyball team.
And the Cougars responded.
Seton Catholic lost in the semifinals in the Class 1A state tournament Saturday, then rallied to beat Christian Faith in five sets 25-20, 13-25, 25-13, 14-25, 15-11 to claim third place in the state.
“It makes you think ‘Why didn’t we beat the other team we played today?’ ” said Adams after watching her team’s inspired play against Christian Faith. “Against Colton, we just came out slow and came out flat. So we pumped the girls up heading into the last match.”
Adams said she told her players how Christian Faith of Federal Way was the top-ranked team in the state coming into the tournament, and a win over the Eagles would be a great way to finish.
“And we beat them,” Adams said. “It was great — great for the school, great for the girls.”
Seton Catholic fell to Colton in the semifinals, 25-16, 25-20, 25-22. Cheyenne Cunning had 20 kills, 10 digs and seven blocks in the match. Brynn Letang added 10 digs and 22 assists.
The third-place match against Christian Faith was a back-and-forth affair, with Seton winning the first set, losing the second, winning the third and losing the fourth.
The final set was tied 11-11 when senior libero Aili Nutter served the final four points of the match, sealing the victory with an ace.
The win improved Seton’s season record to 16-4, which includes three losses to league rival King’s Way.
“I think the girls performed at their peak at the right time of the season,” Adams said. “We came together, found a lineup that worked, and everyone got into the final match to play.”
Cunning had 21 kills, Nutter had 22 digs and 22 service points and Letang had 24 assists, seven digs and 22 service points.
“Brynn played very well,” Adams said. “She’d led the team, like she’s supposed to do.”
Seton Catholic, in the third of its school history, added its first trophy at the state tournament after going 1-2 at state last year.
Two other Clark County programs took home some hardware from a state volleyball tournament.
Prairie bounced back from a quarterfinal loss Friday to win two matches Saturday at the 3A state tournament in Lacey and place fifth.
The Falcons beat Auburn Mountainview 25-7, 25-21, 25-22 and then beat Mount Si of Snoqualmie 25-21, 25-23, 25-20.
At the 1A state tournament in Yakima, Ridgefield split its two matches Saturday, but still placed eighth.
The Spudders beat Naches Valley 25-19, 25-16, 25-14, then lost to Chelan 25-17, 25-17, 25-19 in the seventh-place match, giving the Spudders their highest finish at state since placing seventh in the 2A tournament in 1999.