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Lyman tops K/WL in Class B

Kimball/White Lake’s Haley Pazour (8) attempts a kill against the block of Lyman’s Haley Halverson (15) and Brooklyn Halverson (7) in Class B state tournament action Friday at the Huron Arena in Huron. (Nick McCutcheon/Republic)

HURON — The No. 6 Lyman Raiders topped No. 7 Kimball/White Lake 25-22, 25-21, 25-18 in the semifinals of the Class B state volleyball consolation bracket Friday at the Huron Arena in Huron.

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The win is the first for the Raiders in the state tournament in at least 17 years, according to first-year Lyman coach Jill Whalen, and puts the team in the fifth-place match.

“We had a little game plan coming in and the girls executed great,” Whalen said. “Last year, we went to state and won a couple of sets, but didn’t win a match. This is huge for our players, our community and everyone that supports this team.”

The teams battled through a tough first set that went back and forth. With the set tied at 19, Lyman scored four straight points and put it away four points later on an ace from freshman Sara Herman.

The Raiders took the momentum and stormed out of the gates in the second set. Up 4-3, Lyman scored nine consecutive points to build and take control. After rallying back, the WiLdKats fought off five set points, but eventually droppoed the second set to the Raiders.

“I feel like we just got out hustled at times and we were a little slow in transition,” Kimball/White Lake coach Sarah Deffenbaugh said.

Neither team was able to pull away early in the third set. Tied at 15, Lyman made another run powered by solid blocks at the net and timely kills from senior outside hitter Anna Flitner.

The Raiders scored the final four points of the match, capping the win with Flitner hitting her second ace of the match. Flitner finished with a match-high 13 kills, while adding 11 digs, two aces and two blocks.

“She was really into the game and very intense,” Whalen said about Flitner’s performance.

Lyman senior middle hitter Jessica Welter contributed eight kills, while freshman Brooklyn Halverson added six kills in the win.

Defensively, Herman led the Raiders with 13 digs, and Bailey Almond added 10 digs and a team-high 15 assists. Hanna Thiry contributed nine assists and seven digs, while Carly Uthe had five digs and an ace.

“It was a complete and total team effort,” Whalen said. “Defense wins games and our blockers really stepped up and did a great job.”

The WiLdKats were led by Jazmyn Hinker with eight kills and three aces, while Brooklyn Donald had seven kills. Senior Mary Kroupa had a match-high 24 assists and Anna Pazour added 10 digs in the loss.

The Raiders play No. 8 Herreid/Selby Area in the fifth-place match at 1:45 p.m. today in Huron.

“We are excited about getting a chance to play in the consolation championship,” Flitner said. “It is really important for our program.”

The WiLdKats play No. 5 Harding County, which was upset in five sets Friday by Herreid/Selby Area, in the seventh-place match at noon today.

“We want to come out hard and prove why we are here,” Deffenbaugh said.