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Clearview Clippers post first 20-win season in school history
MORNING JOURNAL/JIM BOBEL Clearview's Chania Sturgill, left, spikes the ball on Fairview's Brianna Kovacevich in the second game of Thursday night's match.
MORNING JOURNAL/JIM BOBEL Clearview's Alexis O'Hara, right, goes up to block Fairview's Rachel Anderson's shot in the second game of Thursday night's match.
MORNING JOURNAL/JIM BOBEL Clearview's Katlynne Baker, center, splits Fairview's Katie Gathman, left, and Morgan Burns with a shot in the second game Thursday night.
MORNING JOURNAL/JIM BOBEL Clearview’s Heather Younkin, back, spikes the ball at Fairview’s Katie Gathman in Game 2 on Thursday night.
Not only did the Clippers win their third-straight PAC Stripes Division championship in dominating fashion, losing just one match in the PAC to Brookside, but they set a single-season record with their first 20-win season in school history.
“It’s been a pleasure coaching all the girls this year,” Clearview coach Dave Dorinski said. “We’ve set small goals and we’ve reached every one of our goals. Even tonight which was Senior Night, it was more important to win the game as opposed to the 20-win season, not just because it was right along with all the small goals we reached.”
Senior captains Katlynne Baker and Rachael Bolmeyer each had great games in their final game at their home gym. Baker led the Clippers (20-2, 15-1) with 12 kills, and Bolmeyer had 29 digs to set a single-season digs record.
“It all comes from the blocking,” said Bolmeyer of her record-setting season. “Having Heather Younkin up there, she’s a monster. She closes the block amazingly. I just have to make a read, guess where the ball’s going to go and she puts it there, basically.”
Younkin added 11 kills, 10 service points and eight blocks for the Clippers as she combined with Baker and Bolmeyer to put up a block that the Warriors could not stop.
The Clippers rolled in the opening game as Baker hit back-to-back aces early on. The front line was strong enough to help Clearview take down Fairview, 25-14.
Game Two was very tight throughout, with 12 ties before Clearview started to pull away, scoring seven of the last nine points capped off by a Baker kill for the 25-20 win. Fairview’s adjustment after game one caught Clearview off guard as the Clippers struggled to gain an edge until later in the game.
“They started hitting up over top of the blocks, which was pretty smart on their side,” Dorinski said. “We’re real confident in our back row. When our front row makes them do their little shots and makes them dig them out, then our back row needs to take over and it’s their job to go ahead and recover from that. They did a nice job in that area.”
Baker said it was special for her and Bolmeyer as senior captains to help lead their team to 20 wins for the first time in school history.
“Since we’ve been freshmen, we’ve been part of the program and wanted to make it better each year,” Baker said. “I think our senior year, we really came out and we got a lot of the girls to work together and pulled our leadership together.”
These two teams will meet again on Tuesday night at Holy Name in Parma for the sectional semifinal. Clearview is 2-0 against the Warriors, but the Clippers don’t plan on taking Fairview lightly.
“It’s nerve-racking because sometimes it feels like they have a heads-up on us because they know what we’re capable of,” Bolmeyer said. “At the same time, we know what’s possible. Of course, we don’t want to get too cocky and them come out and stomp on us. We know that we can pull together and pull out a win if we need to.”
Last Updated: 10/11/2012 10:21:23 PM EST