With a four-set win over Mauldin Thursday, the Nation Ford Falcons volleyball team punched their ticket to the Upper State championship next week.
The Falcons beat Mauldin 3-1 (25-21, 22-25, 25-13, 25-16) and will head to Anderson on Election Day to face the T.L. Hanna Yellow Jackets in the Upper State finals. Nation Ford has already seen TL Hanna this season, where they lost to them. Head coach Carrie Christian said she knows her team is in for a fight.
“We are very respectful of Hanna,” she said. “We are excited to go to there place and get some revenge.”
Nation Ford breezed though the first two rounds of the playoffs beating Easley and Hillcrest in three sets each, but had some tougher competition against Mauldin, dropping a set during their third-round match.
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The teams split the first two sets, Nation Ford winning the first 25-21, before the Mavericks evened the tally with a 25-22 win.
The third and fourth sets were all Nation Ford. The Falcons went up 6-2 to start the third set and Mauldin hit pause calling an early time out. Coming out of the time out, Nation Ford wouldn’t allow any breathing room for the Mavericks as they would extent their lead to 17-9 before another Mauldin time out later in the set. Nation Ford would get the set win at 25-13 to take a 2-1 lead.
The fourth set started much like the third and Nation Ford went up 8-2. From there, Mauldin stayed close at 10-7, but could never rally enough to tie the set, as the Falcons would close out the set and match with a 25-16 win.
Christian said she is glad her team faced stronger competition in preparation for T.L. Hanna, hoping it will pay off next week.
“Playing a good defensive team like Mauldin should give us some confidence because Hanna is a good defensive team,” she said.
During the match against Mauldin, Nation Ford had some history made as senior Camryn McDonagh became the first player in Falcons’ history to record her 1,000th dig.
Mac Banks: email@example.com, @MacBanksFM
High school roundup
Dorman 3, Fort Mill 0
Dorman toppled the Fort Mill Yellow Jackets 3-0 in the second round of the 5A playoffs Tuesday night at Dorman.
Dorman won by scores of 25-13, 25-9, and 25-9.
The Yellow Jackets finished the campaign with a record of 14-11.
Eastside 3, South Pointe 1
Eastside defeated the South Pointe Stallions 3-1 in the second round of 4A playoffs Tuesday night at Eastside.
Eastside won the opening game 25-8, and took a 2-0 lead with a 25-21 win in the second game. South Pointe closed the gap to 2-1 with a 25-21 win in the third game, but Eastside won the match with a 25-13 victory in game four.
The Stallions finished the season with a record of 10-10.
Pickens 3, York 0
Pickens toppled the York Cougars 3-0 in the second round of the 4A playoffs Tuesday night in Pickens.
Pickens won by scores of 25-3, 25-9, and 25-17.
The Cougars completed the season with a record of 9-11.
Indian Land splits
The Indian Land Warriors split a pair of playoffs matches earlier this week.
The Warriors won in the second round this past Monday by beating Broome 3-0.
Indian Land won by scores of 25-9, 25-18, and 25-20.
On Wednesday night the Warriors were defeated on the road by Powdersville in the third round of play.
Powdersville won the first game 25-21 and made it 2-0 with a 25-20 decision in the second game. Indian Land won the third game 25-22, before Powdersville won 25-20 to claim the match and eliminate the Warriors from the post season.
Indian Land finished the season with a record of 22-9-2.
York head coach Dillon Barrett has been selected to coach the North team in the North-South All-Star event next week.
The All-Star match will be played on Saturday, November 10th at Stony Point Golf Club in Greenwood. The match begins at 8:30 a.m. that morning.
J. L. Mann tops Nation Ford
J. L. Mann defeated Nation Ford in the second round of the 5A playoffs this past Monday afternoon.
Nation Ford finished the year with a record of 11-2.
Belton-Honea Path 6, York 0
Belton-Honea Path topped York 6-0 in the second round of the 4A playoffs Monday afternoon at York.
York, the Region 3-4A champion, received a bye in the opening round before losing in the second round.
Knighthawks claim middle school title
The Pleasant Knoll Middle School Knighthawks won the Fort Mill Athletic Conference championship last week by defeating Springfield Middle School 23-14.
The win avenged an earlier 30-22 loss to Springfield during the regular season. The Knighthawks, who were the second seed in the post season, topped Banks Trail 40-6 in the first round of the playoffs.
In the championship contest Pleasant Knoll took a 15-8 lead at halftime, and added another score for a 23-8 lead, before Springfield scored in the final minute of play.
Pleasant Knoll head coach Heber Whitley praised the play of quarterback Isiah Haynes, who passed for both Knighthawk scores in the first half of the title contest. Robert Graham and Robbie Rushing caught the touchdown aerials. Keyonne Abdul-Rahiem ran the second half touchdown.
Linebacker Cade Haley led the Pleasant Knoll defensive effort with 11 tackles, and Brandon Elliot added 10. Defensive tackle Owen Ameo recorded two quarterback sacks.
In the semi-final win over Banks Trail, Nick Krise and Graham scored two touchdowns each. Abdul-Raheim led the defensive effort with 15 tackles, and Krise was spectacular in the secondary with four interceptions.
The Knighthawks finished the season with a record of 7-1.