One match removed from capturing WPIAL championships, Canon-McMillan and Bishop Canevin were eliminated in the first round of the PIAA volleyball tournament.

Canon-Mac succumbed to State College, 3-2. Though they dropped the first set, 27-25, the Big Macs appeared to have the match in hand, winning the next two sets, 25-15 and 25-22, evening leading in the fourth, 13-7, before the Little Lions rallied to win that set, 25-21, and the decisive game, 15-11.

Jenna Vogen had 19 kills, Samantha Parker 13 kills and Morgan Galligan 12 kills and 25 assists. The loss came on the heels of C-M’s upset win against North Allegheny, 3-2, in the WPIAL Quad-A championship match on Nov. 2 at Fox Chapel. The Big Macs trailed the Tigers, 11-25, 25-23, 24-26, before tying the match in the fourth set, 25-17. They won the last set, 15-12.

In winning the title, the Big Macs snapped the Tigers’ 65-match winning streak.

Vogen, who had five aces, led C-M in kills with 17. Katie Weston had 26 digs and Galligan finished with 25. While State College remained unbeaten at 19-0 and advanced to play NA in the second round of the state tournament, the Lady Macs finished the season at 17-2 overall. It was a season of first as the Big Macs won its first tournament game and WPIAL title as well as made its first foray into state playoff action.

“We did amazing things this season,” said Canon-McMillan‘s libero Katie Weston. “We did stuff we never thought we were able to accomplish, so I am happy overall.”

C-M head coach Sheila Mitchell added, “All season long, these girls fought hard. This season has meant so much. We’ve been fighting to go further every year. We got to the point they deserved to get to.”

Meanwhile, the Lady Crusaders dispatched Fort Cherry, 3-1, to claim their third straight Class A title. Canevin won the first two sets, 25-23 and 25-22. After dropping the next set, 25-20, the Lady Crusaders clinched the match with a 25-20 win.

Alexa Malloy lead the team with 17 kills and added 16 digs. Gillian Golupski added 10 and 8 digs. Kyla Hartoyo added 8 and Abbie Maziarz swung for 7. Maddie Maziarz distributed 39 assists and served two aces to go with 10 digs.

Canevin lost to Bishop Carroll, 3-1, in a first-round PIAA Class A tournament match played at DuBois Central Catholic. After splitting sets, 25-16, 21-25, the Crusaders fell, 25-14, 25-21.

Almanac Sports Editor

An award-winning journalist, Eleanor Bailey has been employed by Observer Publishing Company since 1982. She is the sports editor at The Almanac and a contributor for the Observer-Reporter.

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