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Prep volleyball: Lone Peak wins thriller for 5A title

First Published      Last Updated Nov 06 2016 12:22 am


Prep volleyball » Knights knock off Pleasant Grove.

Orem • The day was extremely long on Saturday for the Lone Peak Knights volleyball team.

But two five-set matches, once to beat upset-minded Weber in the semifinals and the last in the Class 5A championship match against Pleasant Grove, came to an end when junior hitter Madelyn Robinson swung one last time.

That ball was tipped by Pleasant Grove and sailed long with Vikings defenders scampering in mad pursuit — and Robinson's kill gave Lone Peak a 25-22, 22-25, 25-22, 24-26, 17-15 victory and the 5A title.

"I can't even believe it right now. It's what I've been waiting for since I was 12," said Lone Peak setter Kacie Huntsman after the wild finish. "It was everything I could every hope for."




Lone Peak (26-3) was the top-ranked team entering the 5A tournament held at Utah Valley University.

But Pleasant Grove (25-6) was seeking a return to the top, where the Vikings were perched after winning three state titles in a row from 2012 to 2014.

"Seventeen-fifteen, fifth set, with the two top teams in the state. It's sad that somebody had to win, somebody had to lose," Lone Peak coach Reed Carlson said. "Of course, I'd rather be on the winning side. Wow, that was awesome."

The two teams swapped victories through the first four sets before heading to the decisive fifth.

In the last set, neither squad had a lead of more than two points.

The first match point opportunity belonged to Pleasant Grove, which led 14-13 before Robinson put away a kill to tie. Lone Peak then had an opportunity at 15-14 when PG's Sara Hamson swung from the middle for a kill.

Jacquelyn Langhaim then got a big block on a shot by Pleasant Grove's Kazna Tarawhiti to put the Knights up 16-15, which then set up Robinson's game-winner.

"I'm proud of my girls. They were resilient. It wasn't our cleanest volleyball, but man they got it done when they needed to," Carlson said.

Lone Peak, led by Robinson's 16 kills and 14 from Gabi Shumway, had a match point in the fourth set.

But Pleasant Grove, paced by Tarawhiti's 20 kills, recovered from a 24-23 deficit by scoring three straight points — the last on a block by Ryenne Robinson — to force the final set.

"I thought we played a great match," said Pleasant Grove coach Allyce Jones, whose team ousted Sky View in an earlier semifinal. "You know, it was one of the most competitive volleyball matches I've ever coached in my life."

For Carlson, a long-time club coach in Utah, the twin five-set victories capped his first season as a high school head coach.

"That's just how we run, I guess," said Carlson of the to-the-limit matches. "It's exciting for the fans and everybody else. They stepped up when they had to. And that team [Pleasant Grove] is awesome, that's all I can say about them."

 

AT A GLANCE

Storylines

Lone Peak defeats region rival Pleasant Grove for a third time this season as the Vikings end up runner-up for the second straight time.

» Madelyn Robinson earns the winning kill in a 17-15 fifth set.

» Robinson leads Lone Peak with 16 kills, Gabi Shumway adds 14.

Class 5A Championship

Lone Peak def. Pleasant Grove 25-22, 22-25, 25-22, 24-26, 17-15

Semifinals

Lone Peak def. Weber 25-17, 25-10, 25-27, 24-26, 15-10

Pleasant Grove def. Sky View 25-14, 25-12, 25-19


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