Badgers upset No. 12 Catalina Foothills 3-2, head to state playoffs
Updated as of Thursday, October 25, 2018 11:15 PM
TUCSON — The Prescott volleyball team pulled the upset card in Thursday night’s 4A state play-in round with a surprising 3-2 victory over No. 12-ranked Catalina Foothills, sending the Badgers to the state playoffs for the sixth straight season.
“We are very excited about this morale boost,” Prescott head coach Josiah Ramirez said via text message while the team traveled back from Tucson. “It took our entire team to get our victory this evening, along with intelligent volleyball decision making.”
Ramirez added he was “proud of the girls.”
The No. 21-ranked Badgers (10-13, 8-4 Grand Canyon) had lost three straight matches coming into Thursday night’s play-in round, including Deer Valley (3-0, Oct. 17), Flagstaff (3-1, Oct. 18) and a 3-0 sweep to rival Bradshaw Mountain 48 hours ago at the Prescott Valley Event Center.
“It’s good to be a part of the final 16,” Ramirez said.
Danielle Dreher recorded eight kills, two blocks and six digs, while Samantha Spengler led the Badgers with 12 kills and two blocks.
Prescott made the state playoffs last season as a No. 14 seed before losing to No. 3-ranked Salpointe Catholic 3-0 in the first round. The Badgers haven’t missed the state tournament since 2012.
Catalina Foothills (12-14, 6-4 Kino) season comes to a close having lost four of their last six matches despite the high ranking.
Canyon Del Oro, Deer Valley, Estrella Foothills, Flagstaff, Greenway, Marcos de Niza, Sal Pointe Catholic and Seton Catholic all received automatic bids to the state playoffs for winning their respective regions.
Youngker, Mesquite, Desert Edge, Dysart, St. Mary’s, Cactus, Prescott and Bradshaw Mountain each won their play-in round match Thursday night, punching their tickets to the playoffs.
The Arizona Interscholastic Association is expected to release the 4A state playoff bracket Saturday, Oct. 27.
Brian M. Bergner Jr. is news/sports editor for The Daily Courier of Prescott News Network. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and SoundCloud at @TheEditorDesk. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 928-445-3333, ext. 1106.