WINFIELD, W.Va. — So much for beginners luck.
The Point Pleasant volleyball team’s first-ever trip to the regional tournament didn’t exactly go the Lady Knights way, as Chapmanville claimed a straight games victory over PPHS, in a Class AA Region IV semifinal on Saturday at Winfield High School.
The Lady Knights (17-12) initially led in the opening game, but the Lady Tigers (31-9) took the a 7-4 lead with a 5-0 run. Point Pleasant never regained the advantage in the first game, falling by a 25-20 final.
Chapmanville scored the first five points and led wire-to-wire in the second, taking the game by a 25-16 margin.
In the third game, Point Pleasant battled back from an early deficit to take the lead at 5-3. CHS regained the advantage at 15-10, thanks to a 7-0 run. The Lady Knights fought back to take the lead at 21-19, but surrendered four straight points to Chapmanville. PPHS cut the deficit to one-point at 23-22, but the Lady Tigers scored the next two points and won the third by a 25-22 final, capping off the 3-0 sweep.
“There’s always those jitters when you’re in a place that you’ve never been before,” said second-year PPHS head coach Marla Cottrill. “(Chapmanville) capitalized on a lot of things that we weren’t doing. Unfortunately, we didn’t work out those bugs until the third set.”
The Point Pleasant service attack was led by senior Michaela Cottrill with 14 points and two aces. Olivia Dotson and Lanea Cochran each posted five points, including four aces by Dotson. Brenna Dotson marked four points in the setback, while Gracie Cottrill added two.
At the net, PPHS was led by senior Luiza Da Costa with six kills and two blocks. Cochran was next with five kills and five blocks, followed by Brenna Dotson with four kills and six blocks. Michaela Cottrill finished with four kills and one block, Olivia Dotson chipped in with three kills, two blocks and seven assists, while Gracie Cottrill contributed two kills and a team-best 10 assists.
“We didn’t have our libero Peyton Jordan and yes, that hurt us a little bit,” Coach Cottrill said. “Madison Hatfield stepped up and did what she had to do. She’s still a little inexperienced playing back row, kudos to her for playing the back row, working hard and doing what she could do.”
Chapmanville — which swept its first four postseason opponents — had its perfect tournament streak come to an end later on Saturday, as Winfield claimed a straight games victory over the Lady Tigers, in the Region IV final. Both CHS and WHS will compete in the state tournament on Friday, facing James Monroe and PikeView respectively.
This marks the final game in the careers of Point Pleasant seniors Michaela Cottrill, Luiza Da Costa and Karlee Edmonds.
“We have three seniors and they’re all going to be missed in their own way,” said Coach Cottrill. “Michaela is our speaking captain, she’s an athlete, she hustles and she’s encouraging to the girls. (Michaela) is one of those girls that sees things on the court and can tell they other girls what to do. Karlee Edmonds is one of those players that will do whatever I ask her to and she’ll give everything she has. Luiza is a front row attacker from Brazil and she’s fit in since day one. It’s like she’s been with these girls since sixth grade and she’s an encouragement to the girls.”
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.