By Quint Turner
It was the last volleyball game of the regular season for the District-bound Meadowdale Mavericks, which means it was Senior Night. Seniors Hailey Hullin, Lindsey Milner, Payton Shrum, Malorie Mahler and Emily Denham all played wonderfully in their last game as the Mavericks swept the Mountlake Terrace Hawks 3-0.
The first set started with a six-point streak for the Hawks, as a tip from Shawna Pung put them up 6-0. But the streak was snapped by Denham’s block on a Hawks’ spike, and the Mavericks started to come back. Milner had a hot spike go off the hands of Terrace players, and the Hawks missed four straight spikes to put the Mavs up 9-8.
Hullin got a wonderful kill to go in after a nice set up by Sloane Morrison that found its way from next to the net on one side all the way to the other—just inside the line—making it 16-11 Meadowdale. Then the Mavs’ Carly Reece put an end to one of the set’s longest rallies with a great spike for a 19-13 lead. Mountlake Terrace threatened with a four-point streak, but the Mavericks eventually closed out the first set after Milner hit a scorcher that found its way through a wall of Mountlake Terrace blockers and in for a 25-18 set win.
The second set started on an eight-point streak by the Mavericks, with the last one coming on a great service ace by Shrum that touched the back line. A great kill by Leah Lechtenberg made it only 8-4 Mavericks, but the Mavs continued to pound as three aces in a row were struck by Reece to increase the lead to 12-4. Later, Morrison hit a smash between all of the Hawks to make it 16-6. A diving dig by Tara Fishback helped set up Shrum to finish off a great point for the Mavs, giving them a 19-8 lead. Despite the scorching kills by Lechtenberg, the Mavs closed out the set on a spike from (who else?) Lindsey Milner that deflected in for a 25-11 second-game win.
Mountlake Terrace came out on fire in the third set. Casey Hynes sent a MHS smash back over and between the Mavs to make it 3-1, and then Madison Elch hit a tap over the wall for a 6-1 Terrace lead. The six-point streak was stopped, but Justine Kelly got Mountlake Terrace out to an 8-2 lead with a scorching kill.
Then MHS started coming back. The Mavs first got within 5, but Terrace held that point lead for a while thanks to the meteoric kills from Lechtenberg. MHS pulled within 3 on a Denham kill after a long rally, and the Mavs tied the game at 16 when Milner spiked another shot. The Mavs took a one-point lead thanks to Denham again. Two fake spikes from the Mavs set Denham up, giving her an open lane to drop her shot in for 17-16 lead. The wall for Meadowdale scored its most important point as they bottled up a Lechtenberg spike and sent it over her head and between Hawks to make it 22-18. The set was closed out thanks to a tip from Shrum that also found its way between the Hawk team, and the Mavs won the set 25-20.
The Mavericks finish the season as the Wesco champs with a record of 13-1 (11-1 in conference) and start District playoffs next Monday at Glacier Peak. They play either Everett or Mountlake Terrace in the first of their two games.
Sports correspondent Quint Turner is a sophomore at Meadowdale High School.