Once the emotions of senior night settled, the North Medford volleyball team collected itself and took care of business against South Medford to cap the regular season Thursday.
The Black Tornado came out firing from the service line, landing 17 aces on just 71 attempts and prevailed, 25-9, 25-12, 25-19. It finished in fourth place in the Southwest Conference at North Medford High School.
“The kids were pretty sharp,” said coach Malcolm Munson, whose Black Tornado has its sights set on a potential at-large berth to the Class 6A playoffs. “There were lots of emotions with senior night but the kids handled it well.
“We got them out of system with our serving and, conversely, we passed very well. It helped get us into system and that’s what volleyball really comes down to, a serve-receive game.”
Junior outside hitter Lauren Barry played a big role in that area for the Black Tornado (17-11, 5-5 SWC). She finished with nine aces on just 20 serving attempts without committing an error and added seven kills.
Junior middle hitter Jenna Sandstrom added six kills and senior outside hitter Allie Hertager went for 17 digs for North Medford.
Black Tornado defensive specialist Riley Stewart had seven digs and collected five aces on just 11 serving attempts while senior setter Kyleigh Lopez came up with 15 assists and a pair of aces.
South Medford finished 7-14 overall and 1-9 in the SWC. Its seven victories equaled its win total from the previous two campaigns.
“We got into our groove by the third set but by then it was too late” said Panthers coach Lindsey Wente on their season finale. “I’m immensely proud of this young team and I’m proud of what they’ve done (this season).”
Caterine Rostel and Maggie Hutto had seven kills apiece for the Panthers, while Matlyn Leetch finished with 20 assists and Evelyn Laupola added three blocks.
Hutto and Madalynn Strain chipped in 10 digs apiece.
GRANTS PASS 3, ROSEBURG 2: At Roseburg, Grants Pass, in fifth place of six teams in the Southwest Conference, pulled off an upset on the road against third-place Roseburg, 25-16, 19-25, 23-25, 25-20, 15-13.
The Cavers improved to 11-17 overall and 3-7 in the SWC, and the Indians fell to 12-10 and 6-4.
CRATER 3, NORTH BEND 0: At Central Point, with the conference championship already wrapped up, Crater overwhelmed North Bend at the net and kept its Midwestern League record unscathed with a 25-14, 25-8, 25-5 victory on senior night.
Nehkyah Ellis recorded 13 kills, 13 digs and a pair of aces, Maya Van Hook produced 11 kills and four blocks and Addison Lowder went for eight kills and three blocks for the Comets (18-2, 15-0 MWL).
Crater’s Marissa Eilenberger added seven kills while the senior defensive specialist trio of Rane Jensen (13 digs), Aubrey Kievit (seven digs) and Heather Colmer (five digs and four aces) all made their mark.
North Bend finished its season 2-17 overall and 0-16 in MWL play.
CHURCHILL 3, EAGLE POINT 0: At Eugene, Eagle Point began to find its rhythm in the third set but it wasn’t soon enough for the Eagles as host Churchill prevailed, 25-13, 25-9, 26-24.
Riley Shopp logged four blocks, three kills and seven digs for the Eagles (4-14, 3-12 MWL) while Kierssa Hogan registered five aces, 10 digs and seven assists, and Sara Angel pitched in six digs.
The Lancers improved to 14-8 overall and 10-5 in the MWL.
LAKEVIEW 3, ROGUE RIVER 1: At Lakeview, Rogue River fell short in its season finale against Lakeview.
The Chieftains finalized their season with a 2-14 record and were 1-11 in the Southern Cascade League, while the Honkers moved to 6-12 and 5-7.
ILLINOIS VALLEY 3, BUTTE FALLS/CRATER LAKE 0: At Butte Falls, Illinois Valley won 25-18, 25-20, 25-18 in the Southern Cascade League match.
Jaimee Byrum had eight kills to lead the Loggers (3-10, 3-8 SCL), while Rocky Scott 18 digs and nine service points.
Lucia Damiana served 11 points, and Mycala Patereau and Adrianna Watanabe each had 17 digs.