Skyview sweeps its way to 4A title; Timberline wins 5A

The Hawks and Wolves earn No. 1 seeds in next week’s state tourneys.

rroberts@idahostatesman.comOctober 25, 2013 

If the Skyview High volleyball team’s 39-2 record doesn’t sound impressive enough, try this stat on for size: The Hawks have won 30 consecutive matches on their way to a third straight 4A District Three championship and ninth in the past 11 seasons.

Skyview swept Bishop Kelly 25-20, 25-21, 25-20 on Thursday night at BK to remain unbeaten against Idaho teams this season. The Hawks have only given up three total games to Idaho squads, including victories over 5A schools Lewiston, Rocky Mountain, Vallivue, Idaho Falls, Post Falls and Madison.

Seven standout seniors have led the way this season, and did so again against the Knights.

Each time BK would creep back into a set, one of Skyview’s hitters — pick any one — would knock the snot out of the ball for a kill, silencing the rally.

“My hitters make me look good, same as my back row,” said senior setter Hailey Cook, who contributed 38 assists, eight digs, four kills and a block. “It’s so much fun to play with them, and I am so excited to see how we are going to do at state.”

Skyview opens the 4A state tournament against the District Four runner-up next Friday in Coeur d’Alene.

It will be Skyview’s 10th trip to state in head coach Kevin Murphy’s 11 seasons, and perhaps the Hawks’ best shot yet to bring home an elusive state championship.

“Without a doubt they are one of the best (teams I’ve coached),” Murphy said. “It’s hard to say, but experience-wise and ball control-wise and court sense, this is right up there. This is as good of a team as I have had.”

Outside hitter Nikki Davidson and middle blocker Emily Nay each posted a team-leading 11 kills against the Knights. Libero Lily Austin accounted for 28 digs and opposite Isabelle Statkus added eight kills and eight digs.

“Our team has been playing together for six or seven years and this is our last chance playing together,” Austin said. “We really just want to go out for our last run and make it the best we possibly can.”

5A: TIMBERLINE TOPS DEFENDING CHAMPS

The Wolves landed their first District Three championship in what head coach Joline Armuth described as a “very long time” by rolling past Vallivue 25-19, 27-25, 25-20.

Vallivue won last year’s title in the double-elimination tournament by defeating Rocky Mountain twice, but couldn’t muster the same performance against the Wolves (17-1) one year later.

“We’ve played them a lot this season, so we are on to (Vallivue’s) schemes and what their strong suits are,” Armuth said. “We were able to capitalize a little bit better than they were tonight.”

Armuth credits her seven seniors — who are playing together on varsity for the third consecutive season — with making the long-overdue title a reality.

“This is a culmination of a lot of effort and a really strong team that works well together,” Armuth said.

Senior rightside hitter Kaite Johnson led the Wolves with 11 kills and 20 digs, setter Sarah Barker contributed 44 assists, and outside hitters Carson Mondada and Tara Hall each had nine kills.

Timberline earns the district’s No. 1 seed at the state tournament, which is Nov. 1 and Nov. 2 in Coeur d’Alene.

Rachel Roberts: 377-6422

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