The Westerville South High School boys volleyball team was ahead of Olentangy two games to none in a Division I East Region final May 26, but Wildcats coach Vicki Phillips felt her team needed a reminder of what happened last year in a similar situation.
“Our focus all season has been not to let up when we’re ahead two (games) to zero, and we had to keep that up tonight,” said Phillips, whose team lost in five games to Pickerington North in a regional final last year after winning the first two games. “We have a lot of seniors and (Olentangy has) a lot of juniors, and I think that made a difference. We wanted redemption from last year.”
Oliver Miller had 13 kills and Deion Woodson had 12 to help top-seeded South hold off second-seeded Olentangy 25-21, 25-22, 25-21 at Westerville Central, clinching the Wildcats’ first regional title in Phillips’ 12 seasons.
Roman Szwabinsky added 31 assists and Colin Blaser had 14 digs for South, which improved to 20-7 and will play Cleveland St. Ignatius in a state quarterfinal June 3 at Capital University.
The Wildcats swept Olentangy in two OCC-Buckeye Division matches during the regular season.
The Braves bolted to an early lead in the third game of the regional final and scored four consecutive points in the third to hold off match point, but South eventually survived.
Olentangy finished 22-4.
“To be successful, we had to be consistent and not get into those valleys,” Braves coach Karen Kochheiser said. “We had a good showing. We started with a lot of energy and enthusiasm.”
Hilliard Darby 3, Dublin Jerome 0
Top-seeded Darby rolled past seventh-seeded Jerome 25-12, 25-10, 25-12 in a Division I East Region final May 26 at Westerville Central to earn a state tournament berth for the eighth consecutive season.
The Panthers improved to 23-4 and will play Stow-Munroe Falls or Lakewood St. Edward in a state quarterfinal June 3 at Capital.
The Celtics finished 13-10.
Darby lost to Cincinnati Moeller 22-25, 25-19, 24-26, 25-23, 15-11 in a state semifinal last season.
The Panthers went 3-0 against Jerome this season. They swept the Celtics in OCC-Cardinal play, winning 25-10, 25-11, 25-11 on April 10 and 25-7, 25-20, 25-13 on April 27.
—Brad EmerineDivision II
Dublin Scioto 3, Mount Vernon 1
Top-seeded Scioto rallied to beat third-seeded Mount Vernon 19-25, 29-27, 25-23, 25-17 in the Division II East Region final May 26 at Westerville Central to earn its first state tournament berth since 2003.
“Mount Vernon gave us as good a test as we could get,” Irish coach Doug Arden said. “It was exciting. The middle two sets were as close as close could be. We played most of the second set from behind until really late in the game.”
Scioto improved to 20-3 and will play Cuyahoga Falls Walsh Jesuit or Akron Hoban in a state semifinal June 3 at Capital.
“The goal wasn’t just to get to (the regional final) and be happy with that,” Arden said. “We have to get ready. I don’t think these kids see it as we just want to win the regional final and that’s good enough. We have some pretty big goals and we’ll get ready to see what we can do.”