Bishop Dwenger quickly beat Woodlan in three sets in the first match at the Bishop Dwenger Sectional on Thursday night, and Garrett withstood a late rally by Bishop Luers in the second match of the night to win 3-0 and move on to Saturday's semifinals.
The Saints (27-2) won their first set 25-13 and were challenged a bit more in the second, winning 25-20, before wrapping up the third set 25-8.
“We finished real good. Kind of a slow start a little bit, and wasn't real happy with the second set, but that happens,” Dwenger coach Tim Houser said. “Woodlan's got a nice team, a nice program this year. I was happy for their year, and we're just trying to take it one step at a time. I mentioned, in that third set, let's get back to Dwenger volleyball, and I think we did that.”
The Saints held a narrow lead for the first half of the second set, but the Warriors (20-8) tied up the set at 15. The Saints wrestled back control by winning six of seven points to go up 23-17.
“We were just giving away too many points. Too many unforced errors,” Houser said. “Every team is going to make errors, it's a game of errors, but we don't want to add to that.”
The Saints really unleashed the big guns in the third set, opening up with a block and continuing the dominate at the net for the rest of the match. Junior outside hitter Eva Hudson had nine of her team-high 19 kills in the third, including the match-ending point. She also had 13 digs and four aces.
Lexa Zimmerman had eight kills and 14 digs, Olivia Tellez had 37 assists and Emma Lyons had 16 digs for the Saints.
In the second match, Bishop Luers tied Garrett at 18, but the Railroaders (29-3) won seven straight points to claim the first set 25-18.
The Knights (14-13) also rallied in the second set, narrowing an 18-13 deficit to 22-21. But the Railroaders again won the final three points to escape with a 25-21 win.
In the third set, the Railroaders took a 17-5 lead before the Knights won six straight points to pull back into the match. Luers got as close as 24-21 before Garrett closed out the third set 25-21.
“I think that they played with a lot of heart. We had some great, scrappy plays that I think were a lot of fun to watch and encouraging. So I'm looking forward now to Saturday's match,” Garrett coach Lydia Gard said. “(Bishop Luers) did a nice job of really continuing to push us. The fact that they were continuing to get after it is what gave us a little bit of trouble. They just kept going.”
Logan Smith and Morgan Ostrowski each had 14 kills for Garrett, and Smith had two of the team's three aces.
The Saints and Railroaders will meet at 12:30 p.m. Saturday. Angola and Concordia will play in the first semifinal at 11 a.m. The final is scheduled for 7 p.m. Saturday.