Penguins Fly Past Cougars; Soar to Volleyball Playoffs

Aaron McPherson – Reporter

After finishing the regular season with a record of eight wins, six losses, Clark’s women’s volleyball team tied for fourth place in the south region standings with the Clackamas Cougars.

To officially break the tie and determine who would move on to the Northwest Athletic Conference (NWAC) playoffs, Clark hosted Clackamas in a bonus seasonal match on Nov. 10.

The Penguins came out victorious with a 3-1 win, securing a place in the championship tournament. The box score was 25-17, 22-25, 25-20, 25-20.

The two teams had a similar conclusion when Clark hosted Clackamas on Nov. 2, with Clark winning the match 3-1.

Clark was selected to host the Nov. 10 game on account of the seasonal sets tiebreaker rule. The tiebreaker rule combines the final scores from the two regular-season games. Due to the Penguins winning once 3-1 and the Cougars winning the other contest 3-2, the combined set score is 5-4 in Clark’s favor.

Now that the Penguins are moving on to the playoffs, which will be held at the Greater Tacoma Convention Center on Nov. 15, the team will be preparing to take on the Spokane Sasquatch. Spokane won the East Region title with a spotless 16-0 conference record with an overall record of 35-0.

“I think we just kinda have to stay focused and just keep practicing throughout the week before we leave,” said Penguins right side Payton Walker. “They have a really packed team, which is intimidating, but if we do the fundamentals and just kinda push through it, then I think we’ll be okay.”

Clark has encountered Spokane twice this season. Their first match was during the NWAC showcase in Eugene, Oregon on Aug. 25, ending 0-2. Their second match was during the Spokane Tournament on Sept. 7, ending 0-3.

“Since we just got the game over with today, we’ll probably work on fundamentals and working on focusing on the next point and not letting their energy get to us and keep pushing back,” said Libero Mary Schorn.

The Clark-Spokane game will be one of two games to begin the playoff tournament. The starting time will be 9 a.m. on Nov. 15. The other 9 a.m. game will be between the Shoreline Dolphins and the Lower Columbia Red Devils.

The winners of these two games will advance and face each other at 10 a.m. on Nov. 16. The losers will face off in the consolation bracket at 6:30 p.m. on Nov. 15.

The team will be leaving Clark for the championships on Nov. 14.

Fans can watch the games on YouTube by going to the channel NWAC Sports Network or NWAC Sports Network 2.

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