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Final Four Pool Play

Posted Monday, November 17, 2008 by Jamestown Post Journal
GLENS FALLS - The Salamanca Lady Warriors find themselves one win away from capping off a spectacular season in the finest of fashions - by hoisting a girls volleyball Class C state championship trophy.
Salamanca made it through pool play and now enter the finals as the No. 1 seed for today's contest, scheduled for noon against Westlake. They stormed through pool play in impressive fashion with a healthy 5-1 record.
''It feels great. We knew this team had a lot of potential,'' said Salamanca coach Tom Roof after the win. ''A lot of people expected a lot out of us, but I told the girls early in the year it comes down to what we expect out of ourselves.''
After dropping the first game against Westlake, 25-22, in pool play, Salamanca rebounded with a 25-17 win. Lake George and East Rockaway barely threatened the Lady Warriors as Salamanca won over Lake George, 25-13 and 25-13, and over East Rockaway, 25-16 and 25-19.
In the finals, Salamanca will face off in a rematch against Westlake. To the winner goes the title of state champions.
The Lady Wildcats are returning five seniors this season from last year's team that reached the finals and lost to then-Class C school Eden of Section 6.
The experience of the Westlake team in the finals caused Roof's team to drop its first game in pool play, starting out with an ominous record of 0-1.
''They were in the finals last year and it was our first match of the day. We came out really tentative which was uncharacteristic of any game all year,'' Roof said.
Down 24-16, the real Lady Warriors showed up.
''The turning point was when it was 24-16 in the first game. We had a great six-point run and during that run we became ourselves again,'' Roof added. ''We started playing better and that carried over into the next game.''
From the second game through the sixth game, Salamanca went on a tear and never looked back.
Katie Auge had 27 kills for the Lady Warriors on the day. Ashley Abrams finished with 23 kills and Brittany Haines racked up 70 assists as the designated passer to Auge, Abrams and Hannah Reynolds.
Reynolds tallied 16 kills and six blocks, Kayla Siperek and Olivia Beattie each contributed 13 digs while Cassie Crandall had four blocks.
''Once we started going we were getting a lot of hands on the balls at the net. We started passing and hitting the ball and taking teams out of their comfort zone,'' Roof said.
Once the Lady Warriors got into their up-tempo style of play, it was almost impossible to defend against them. That's just one of the strengths of this well-rounded team.
''We knew it was going to be a special year,'' Roof said. ''One win at a time - that's been our focus.''
From one win at a time to simply one more win.
Their dreams for a state championship can be met today at noon.
''We're not overwhelmed. We knew this was a possibility. We wanted to get through today, regardless of how we did it,'' Roof said on Saturday.
The Lady Warriors got through pool play in impressive fashion. Now, the Far West Regional champions from Class C and the Section 6 champions from Class C have something special going and only Westlake stands in the way of the Lady Warriors from Salamanca.

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