“It’s very nice because Senior Day is very emotional, so for them to play to play normally, it’s really tough,” Reed volleyball coach Kristen Flagtvedt said. “I thought they did a really good job being aggressive and didn’t let them make mistakes.”
Considering how the momentum changed in Game 2, it almost looked like the Raiders wouldn’t send out seniors Kendra Davis, Alicia Lee, Kyndal Comphel, Cheyenne Faanes and Rachel LeSage on a winning note in their final regular-season home game.
The Warriors jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead and turned that into an 11-2 edge before Reed used its final timeout of the second game.
The Raiders began what appeared to be the makings of an epic comeback by scoring 10 of the next 13 points. Lee helped the cause by recording three of her eight kills during a 5-0 run that closed the gap to 14-12.
However, that’s as good as it got for the home team as Whittell answered with six straight points to take a 20-12 lead.
Reed went back on the comeback trail again, but it was cut short after getting to within three points, 22-19. The Warriors took control from that point and tied the match at one game apiece.
“Even though Whittell is a different level than us, they usually have a scrappy defense. They hit the ball a lot better than they did at the beginning of the season, so it was nice to have to raise our level of play to come out with a win,” Flagtvedt said.
That woke up Reed and it dominated the third and fourth games.
An early 7-0 rally propelled the Raiders to a 10-2 advantage in Game 3. Faanes had three of her five aces in that span.
The Blue and Gold went up by double digits for the first time at 13-3 thanks to an Olivia Emerson block. The hosts then padded their cushion to a game-high 17-4 mark.
When the score reached 20-10, both teams traded sideouts every point the rest of the way for the final 25-15 margin.
Game 4 was much of the same but Reed waited until the end to pull away for good.
The Raiders enjoyed a 7-2 lead, but Whittell stayed within striking distance. It was 12-6 Reed before it began to widen the gap.
The east Sparks school’s first double-digit lead was 18-8. A 6-1 Warriors rally made it a 20-14 score, but they wouldn’t score again as the Raiders closed out the match with five unanswered points.
Emerson led the way with nine kills, while Moriah Maluotoga added eight. Comphel handed out a game-high 26 assists and added five aces. LeSage finished with 12 assists. Faanes lifted 14 digs.
Reed (20-8, 11-5) gets to host a first-round playoff game Wednesday against Carson at 6 p.m.