A night of dominant performances for Mount Si volleyball, as varsity and JV deliver against Woodinville

It has been a good stretch as of late for the Mount Si High School girls’ volleyball team as it approaches the start of Kingco 4A play. Coming off of two really impressive, eye-opening road wins last week over league rivals Issaquah and Skyline in preseason action, the Wildcats last night closed out their non-conference schedule at home in Snoqualmie with one last tuneup against a Kingco foe, and if how things went is any indication, this team could become something special before all is said and done.

An early first-set burst by Mount Si, keyed by very tough serving from Sophie Click, set the table and players such as sophomore Patience O’Neal continued to apply pressure the rest of the way, helping the Wildcats post a relatively dominating 25-10, 25-15, 25-15 sweep of the Woodinville Falcons. O’Neal led the way, with 10 kills, six digs and a block to pace Mount Si.

“I was really impressed,” said Mount Si coach Bonnie Foote.

The match started out a bit slow for the Wildcats, with Woodinville rolling out of the gate on a 5-1 clip. But once Mount Si gained possession via side-out, it turned into the Click show. The Mount Si junior reeled off six straight service aces, part of a 12-0 run, that put the Wildcats in front, as it turned out to stay. And the biggest reason that occurred was how Mount Si responded each time they lost possession on a side out. The Wildcats were able to get that ball back on the next point, or shortly thereafter, and that helped scarlet and gray maintain momentum, which they were able to turn into a set victory thanks to the efforts of O’Neal and senior Haley Holmberg among others. Holmberg finished the match with a solid six kill, five digs, two ace and 3 ½ block effort. Click finished the set off with a kill on the second set point and Woodinville on serve. She aided scarlet and gray with that kill, an assist, seven aces, three digs and a block.

Holmberg played the game with a broken finger, an injury she suffered in a recent match. Foote is especially pleased with how her senior has adjusted into her leadership role. “I’m really proud of her. She’s been an incredible leader for us this season. She’s stepped into that role really well,” the coach said.

The Wildcats opened the second set with the lead and did not give that lead up the whole frame. Holmberg and O’Neal continued to lead the way with strong play, but Click, junior Katie McCreadie and freshman Karlie Stewart contributed with kills in the frame, helping the Mount Si cause. Foote was pleased to get all of her players into the game, including the team’s four freshmen – Stewart, Hayley West, Harper Click and Sara Kaitlyn Mitchell – and give them quality playing time. “I was happy that we got everybody in,” the coach said. A pair of aces by Stewart finished off the second frame and off to the third set things went.

Woodinville did its best to assert control in the third set, but Holmberg and O’Neal’s continued excellent play helped keep the Wildcats in the hunt. A kill and block by O’Neal midway through the frame put Mount Si in front, and they ran off a 10-0 string to lock the match up, with kills during that sequence by McCreadie, O’Neal and Mitchell helping aid the effort. A kill by Courteney Carr closed out the match and the Wildcats now have a three-match win streak going into league play next week. Along with that kill, she had 20 assists, three aces and two digs to pace the Mount Si efforts. McCreadie added four kills and three blocks, while Stewart had the two aces, along with a dig and a block to help scarlet and gray.

Foote is looking for big things for O’Neal, her newcomer from east of the mountains. “We need her to be a terminator,” she said, adding that O’Neal has helped to diversify the attack this season for the young Wildcat team. “We’re not a one-dimensional team this year. We are well-rounded, which is really good,” Foote said. Being diversified like this has its advantages, according to the coach. “When you’ve got hitters coming from all angles, now the defense doesn’t know where you’re going to set the ball,” Foote said.

O’Neal is amazed with the quality competition she is facing in the league this fall. “There’s definitely a lot of tougher competition around here,” she said.

The Kingco 4A schedule starts up next week. Foote hopes the girls are able to keep this going. “I want them to go into regular season with that same confidence and just take care of us,” she said. Sophie Click concurred. “If we keep playing the way we are, things are going to go well for us,” she said.

Mount Si is at Bothell next Monday night to open league play after taking the rest of this week off. The first serve at Bothell High School is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.

JV also dominant: The Wildcat JV was just as strong, scoring a 25-14, 25-16, 15-8 win over the Falcons, led by a 13 kill, eight dig effort from Emily Cole that also included a service ace. Kami Smith added 12 assists while Lily Bachand pitched in 12 digs, three aces, two kills and a ½ block to the Wildcat cause. “The JV Wildcats had their most complete match of the season so far, meeting their standards in offense, defense, and serve receive,” wrote coach Dave Bachman by email to the SVSJ. Mount Si is at Bothell next Monday night at 5:30 prior to the varsity contest.

“C” team falls in sweep: The Woodinville “C” team dominated in a three-set sweep over the Wildcat “C” teamers 25-9, 25-14, 15-4. Savanna Samuelson had three kills and 13 digs to pace Mount Si, while Brenna McDaniel had an assist and 12 digs. “A rough night, but they are getting better every day,” wrote Wildcat “C” team coach Cristin Stahlberg by email to the SVSJ. Mount Si is at Bothell next Monday.

Mount Si grad could play in front of TV cameras tonight
A Mount Si High School graduate could hit the college volleyball floor tonight in a nationally-televised game.

Loyola Marymount University’s women’s team is set to meet the team from Brigham Young University tonight in Provo, UT. The matchup is set to start at 6:00 p.m. and can be seen on ESPNU, an ESPN-owned cable sports network that is available on all local cable and satellite systems serving the Valley. Playing for the Lions this fall is sophomore Lindsay Carr, from Snoqualmie and a 2014 Mount Si High School graduate. She hasn’t had an awful lot of playing time as of late, so she may or may not see action this evening.

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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