Previewing and picking the showdown for the Kingco Tournament volleyball title, Mount Si vs. Mercer Island

The Kingco 3A tournament volleyball title is on the line this afternoon as the Mount Si Wildcats meet up for the second time in five days against their arch-rivals from Mercer Island.

KINGCO 3A VOLLEYBALL
KINGCO TOURNAMENT CHAMPIONSHIP
MOUNT SI WILDCATS VS. MERCER ISLAND ISLANDERS
SAMMAMISH HS, BELLEVUE – FIRST SERVE 5:30 P.M.

Mount Si comes into today’s game after trouncing Lake Washington Thursday night, while Mercer Island comes in after having done the same to Liberty Thursday as well.

The Wildcats scored a 25-13, 25-15, 25-15 win over the Kangs, who we’re told looked tired after having beaten Bellevue earlier that evening just to get to play Mount Si. The trifecta of McDonald, Carr and Smith were busy, but once again, let’s talk a little bit about one Ms. Rachel Hayford.

Hayford, Mount Si’s junior libero, picked up 14 digs, continuing her solid play that she has put in over the last few weeks, play which earned the notice of opposing league coaches, who named Hayford to the Kingco’s 2nd team all-league for volleyball in awards announced Thursday night prior to the contest. We have been telling you the last few days that we think her play will be key, and it already has been. So Hayford again will need to be on the top of her game today against a MI squad who played well against Mount Si Monday, but fell just short.

In the Wildcats’ win Monday night over the Islanders, senior Sarah McDonald logged 24 kills, junior Lauren Smith added 33 assists and sophomore Lyndsay Carr pounded out nine kills and five digs. Those three will need to be contributing that kind of effort once again for Mount Si to have success again.

But, as you know if you read our game story, coach Bonnie Foote in her postgame comments offered praise for the Islanders and indicated she knew what they were capable of doing. And that Islander team is a very good crew which is well-coached. Susan Rindlaub has done a nice job in two years on the MI bench after having taken over for former longtime head man Dino Annest. Rindlaub has the Islander program back among the league’s elite and that crew is led by sophomore Sara Lindquist. The younger sister of MI’s star football QB Jeff Lindquist dropped nine kills Monday, and will need to pick the pace up today if the Islanders want to win the tournament title. Lindquist will have a couple of key players helping her: senior Rachel Bowdle (16 digs Monday) and junior Carly Wilson (24 assists). Those two, along with juniors Robby Blood and Lorial Yeadon, will need to play strong today for MI to have success.

The one main difference about today’s game will be it’s on a Saturday at a neutral site. As opposed to the home-floor advantage Mount Si had Monday. Whichever team brings out the fans and responds the best to the environment will deliver. And we think that the Wildcats are playing quite well at the moment, and will get it done. It’ll take a bit longer than Monday, but Mount Si is on a roll, and nothing’s going to stop it, not yet anyway.

MOUNT SI IN 5

Quick pick on the other game:

Lake Washington vs. Liberty – Kangs beat Pats in both meetings this season, so that, combined with more experience out of LW group, gives them edge. That said, Liberty, who stunned Juanita Thursday to make it to today’s games, still has district berth, so result for them should not be a disappointment. LW in 3

Rhett Workman

About Rhett Workman

Rhett Workman is the editor of the Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal. Workman is a veteran sports journalist, having covered Snoqualmie Valley sports for nearly a decade with the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper before starting up the SVSJ. Workman's coverage has earned the support and respect of Valley coaches, players, parents and fans, and the SVSJ continues the standard of coverage that Workman brought to the Valley Record.
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