2A volleyball: San Juan subdues unfamiliar foes to reach semifinals
Orem • It's kind of like a party of the elite who only see each other once a year for some of the Class 2A teams at the state volleyball team.
But the San Juan Broncos seem to be making their way through the awkward introductions just fine.
They beat back a pair of opponents they never had seen this season Friday, Knocking off Maeser Prep 25-8, 25-12, 25-15 in the first round then disposing of Beaver 25-22, 25-20, 21-25, 25-20 in the quarterfinals.
The battle with the Beavers was not without a struggle.
But the power hitting of junior Tatiana Su'e Su'e, combined with some timely kills by sophomore Sara Morley at the end of the match, pushed the Broncos into the semifinal round.
"I've had coaching reports come in from other coaches and we've tried to livestream when we could," San Juan coach Cassy Moon said about the process of scouting unfamiliar teams at the most critical time of the season.
"We hadn't played [Beaver] and we hadn't played Maeser Prep either," said Su'e Su'e. "It's exciting, definitely an adrenaline rush."
After San Juan (11-7-1) nipped Beaver (8-14) in the first two sets, the Beavers bounced back to take the third behind the hitting of MacAil Wood.
A 19-19 tie in the fourth set was broken by a block and then a kill from Shelbi Black to put the Broncos up by two.
With San Juan up 22-19, Morley tallied the next three points two kills and a serving ace on the match's final point to end the match.
"In a close game like that, it's really just a couple of plays that cost you the game," Beaver coach Joe Hillock said. "When you're playing to get to the final four, you just can't make two or three mistakes in a row. It kills you and gives them momentum. We really thought we could get it to the fifth game."
San Juan will face Delta, which beat South Sevier in the quarters.