Raiders Crowned Cascade Conference Champions

Staying true to form, the Southern Oregon volleyball team easily saw off the threat of College of Idaho in three dominating sets to claim the Cascade Conference Tournament Championship this past Saturday at the McNeal Pavilion.

The Raiders comprehensive sweep of the Coyotes is the 18th time that Southern Oregon has not dropped a set this season and leaves them standing at a 22-3 overall record.

In front of a rousing home crowd, the Raiders made sure College of Idaho never got settled into any kind of attacking or defensive rhythm.

Southern Oregon opened the match with four kills each from Megan Bartling, Sarah Holgen and Leanne Stennett coupled with two service aces by Lindsey Stone led them to quickly wrap up the first set 25-19.

Bartling, Holgen and Stennett also combined for only three errors while hitting .323 to keep the Coyotes on their back foot.

If the first set was any indication of the Raiders intent, the second set simply repeated it as they recorded only one error while hitting a season-high .727, cruising to a 25-17 win and a 2-0 set lead.

It was only in the third set that College of Idaho finally decided to give the Raiders some trouble as they managed to tie the game 11 times and looked likely to take the lead with the teams level at 22 each.

However, two errors nicely set up game point for the Raiders that Sarah Holgen put away following a kill from the Coyotes to finish the set 25-23 and end the game.

Both Holgen and Stennett led the Raiders attack by posting 14 kills each.  Stone also aided the Raiders with 40 assists, along with seven digs and four aces.

Libero Becky Johstone and Stennett each had 11 digs on the night.

Sarah Harris’ 13 kills and four blocks paced College of Idaho while Whitney Owen had 16 digs and Lauren Bourgeau recorded five blocks.

By winning the championship, Southern Oregon has booked their place in the NAIA National Tournament and will be looking to continue their overwhelming dominance on the national stage.

Meanwhile, College of Idaho will be hoping that they are awarded an at-large bid to participate in the NAIA National Tournament as well.

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