Posted: Sunday, October 27th 2013 at 9:12am
Volleyball: Jefferson advances to Class AA Final Four; Buford marches on
By staff reports
SAVANNAH –- The Jefferson girls volleyball team continues to reach uncharted waters.
The Lady Dragons started strong and then held on for a thrilling 3-2 win over St. Vincent’s Saturday in the quarterfinal round of the Class AA state playoffs.
It is the first time in program history that Jefferson (34-11) has advanced to the Final Four of the playoffs. The Lady Dragons are the only public school still remaining in the Class AA tournament.
Meanwhile, Buford also advanced to the Class AAA "Final Four" on Saturday courtesy a 3-0 defeat of North Oconee at home. And, in Class AAAA, Chestatee saw its thrilling campaign come to an end with a 3-0 defeat to top-seeded Columbus.
Jefferson, the No. 5 seed in Class AA, jumped out to an early 2-0 lead taking the first two sets 25-22, 25-22. St. Vincent’s, the No. 4 seed, rallied to win the next two sets by identical 25-13 scores setting up a deciding fifth set. The Lady Dragons would regroup to win the final set 15-8 and stay alive.
"In my long career, which includes close to 600 matches, I have never been a part of a more intense match," Jefferson coach Mike Paul said. "During the break (before the final set)I asked our girls to dig deep and try to find another level. They rose to the challenge yet again.”
Grace Williamson paced Jefferson with eight kills and 10 digs. Lindsey Nilsen added five kills and four blocks, Abby wood had five kills, six digs, and one block, and Paige Watson had four digs and eight assists for the Lady Dragons.
Madison Corbett had eight assists, Bre Arbanas had three kills, and Olivia Przybysz added seven digs for Jefferson. Daniela Franco and Avery Mixon each had one block for the Lady Dragons.
Jefferson next will take on top seed Westminster on Wednesday for a berth in the state finals. Westminster was the state runner-up last season.
In Class AAA, Buford will take on Area 5-AAA nemesis St. Pius -- which finished second behind fellow 5-AAA team Blessed Trinity in 2013.
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