LAKEWOOD Through two sets, all indications were that Squalicum was going to advance in to the second round of the Class 2A State Volleyball Championships.
Three sets later, the Storm was walking off the court after losing to Spokane East Valley 19-25, 15-25, 25-13, 25-15, 15-8 on Friday, Nov. 15, in the first round of state at Pierce Community College in Lakewood.
The Storm moves in to the consolation bracket, where it will face Port Angeles at 3:15 p.m. in a loser-out match.
Squalicum began by winning 11 of the first 14 points in the first set against East Valley. The Knights managed to close it to 21-18, but the Storm won four of the next five points to claim the opening set.
The second set opened with the two teams trading points back and forth until Squalicum was able to win seven consecutive points to take a 13-6 lead. The Storm would see its lead grow to 19-9 with several kills by senior hitter Meghan Lowry. Lowry would inevitably cap the set with a cross-court kill, giving the Storm a two-set advantage.
East Valley, facing elimination, won 17 of the first 23 points en route to a 25-13, third-set win. The Knights senior hitter, Elisha Allred, had four kills and three blocks in the set.
What looked to be a strong opening for Squalicum in the fourth set quickly dissipated. The Storm jumped out to a 9-5 lead after several Knights miscues. East Valley, though, won eight of the next nine points, taking a 13-10 lead. The Storm didnt have an answer for Allred or fellow Knights outside hitter Jordan Phelan, as the two continually recorded kills through Storm blocks.
After the Storm brought the fourth set to 15-12, East Valley claimed 10 of the final 13 points for the win.
The deciding set started with East Valley taking an early 3-1 lead. Squalicum managed its way back following kills by Lowry and a service error by the Knights. But as was the problem in the third and fourth sets, errors and timely kills by East Valley secured the Storms loss.