LINCOLN — Hartington Cedar Catholic found itself in the consolation match of the Class D1 state volleyball championships here at Lincoln East High School after running into a buzzsaw named Diller-Odell in the semifinals Friday at Pinnacle Bank Arena.
The Trojans came into the third-place match battle-tested and showed their mettle before bowing out of the match in the fifth set 28-26, 21-25, 23-25, 25-21, 11-15.
“We were going to play to the end,” Cedar Catholic coach Denae Buss said. “We will not back down and we will not quit.”
After winning a marathon in the opening set, the Trojans gathered themselves in set four to turn away the Bulldogs to force the race to 15 to decide the match.
Brooklyn Kuehn put the final dagger in the set with a kill off the Pleasanton block went out of bounds.
The Bulldogs raced to leads of 3-0 and 5-1 in the final set before the Trojans responded.
Abigail Hochstein slammed a winner off a Bulldog block out of bounds to make it 5-2 and then Aiden Wortmann served an ace, one of her four ace serves in the match.
Pleasanton recorded a kill then was called for getting in the net to make it 6-4.
Hochstein took her turn at the service line, then rifled an ace, one of her five in the match, and Cedar Catholic was back to
within a single point.
The Trojans completed the comeback when Laney Kathol and Brynn Wortmann stuffed a Bulldog spike at the net and the score was tied 6-6.
A Cedar Catholic error made it 7-6 for Pleasanton, but a service error by the Bulldogs evened the score again.
A Pleasanton hitting error put the Trojans on top 8-7, but the score was tied again with a Bulldog winner.
Back-to-back kills by Brynn Wortmann sandwiched around a Pleasanton spike put Cedar Catholic up 10-9.
“We were right there at that moment,” Buss said.
“We were playing pretty good and getting to the net,” he said.
Unfortunately, the Bulldogs outscored the Trojans 6-1 the rest of the way and claimed the third-place trophy and medals by a 15-11 final.
In the opening set, HCC trailed 23-18 late in the set but found life after a Pleasanton error made it 23-19.
Brynn Wortmann hit a directional tip-kill down the net and made a solo block at the net to make it 23-21 and forcing Pleasanton coach Shane Nordby to call a timeout.
Out of the timeout, the Bulldogs were called for a double-hit and Hochstein smashed an ace to complete the comeback and tie the score 23-23.
The Trojans went on to claim the set by the 28-26 score when Kenlee Goeden hit a tip-kill past the Pleasanton block.
Class D1 consolation
Pleasanton defeats Hartington Cedar Catholic 26-28, 25-21, 25-23, 21-25, 15-11.
HARTINGTON CEDAR CATHOLIC (19-14): Megan Heimes 3a, 24d; Laney Kathol 4k, 2b, 2d; Brynn Wortmann 16k, 1a, 12d; Gracie Dickes 1a; Aiden Wortmann 1k, 5b, 4a, 5d, 40s; Kenlee Goeden 4k, 2d, 1s; Abigail Hochstein 17k, 5a, 9d; Tori Arens 1a, 3d; Brooklyn Kuehn 8k, 1b, 2d.
PLEASANTON (32-2): Paige Weisdorfer 1a, 15d, 1s; Natalie Siegel 4k 1b, 1a, 16d, 45s; Isabelle Paitz 17k, 1a, 16d, 2s; Kinsey Lindner 1k; Katelyn Lindner 15k, 4b, 1a, 10d, 1s; Cadee Nichols 1a, 13d, 3s; Kaci Pierce 9k, 1b, 1a, 16d; Chelsea Fisher 9k, 3b, 3d, 1s.