SALINA — It all came down to one high school volleyball match on Friday night at the Bicentennial Center in Salina.
Hoisington had to topple No. 1-seeded Garden Plain to advance to the second day.
Not only that, but the Lady Cardinals had to win in two games to advance.
A wall of blockers and some bruising hitters for the Lady Owls kept Hoisington on the ropes with four quick points.
Garden Plain led the rest of the way for a 25-12 win in Game 1.
“We got down early, and we really couldn’t pull ourselves out of it,” Hoisington head coach Jon Bingesser said. “That second match I said, “Hey guys, this is it. There will either be a third or this is the last. This is it. It is done after this. If we win, we are not done.’ ”
With the loss, Hoisington was out of the running for a semifinal berth as Garden Plain had a higher win percentage, and Southeast of Saline had the Lady Cardinals beat head-to-head.
Hoisington finished the season 32-10.
“I was hoping we could get two more wins because right now my career record is 98-56, so a state championship would’ve been my 100th win as a coach,” Bingesser said. “We still did a good job, and I couldn’t be more happy with the way we played.”
The Lady Cardinals kept the second game close, keeping within two or three points until they took a 13-9 lead with Abi Rziha serving.
The Lady Owls closed the gap, tying the game at 20.
With Hoisington out in front, Garden Plain faced game point four times before the Lady Cardinals pulled out a 28-26 victory.
In the third game, Garden Plain took a lead at 5-4 and never relinquished it, winning 25-17.
Junior setter Abi Rziha finished the tournament with 55 assists, including 20 against Garden Plain.
Mykela Riedl led with 66 digs, and Ashley Lockwood recorded a team-leading 24 kills.
The Lady Cardinals couldn’t get a hold on their first match as Southeast of Saline captured 25-15 and 25-13 wins.
In the first game, Hoisington tied the game at 5-5, but the Trojans went on five- and six-point runs to pull ahead.
“I didn’t quite expect us to come out like that,” Bingesser said. “We had a great week of practice, and we were pumped up. I think we got out of system early, and we couldn’t get back into it.
“We came out flat in Game 2. That was the game we focused on. We had to take Game 2, but we let them score 6-0 right off the bat.”
The second game was halted for a few minutes as the officials looked for a ruling on a possible uniform infraction.
According to the rule book, a player is only allowed to have one logo on their uniform. After deliberating with Kansas State High School Activities Association officials, the uniform was deemed legal.
Hoisington took control of the first game against Marysville, but the two teams traded the lead back and forth until the Lady Cardinals pulled ahead 23-22.
Hoisington couldn’t secure the game point until a Lady Bulldogs spike went out of bounds for a 28-26 Lady Cardinals triumph.
In the second game, Hoisington began to pull away after the set was tied at eight. The Lady Cardinals won 25-18.
HIGH SCHOOL VOLLEYBALL
Class 3A state tournament
Garden Plain 2, Marysville 0
SE of Saline 2, Hoisington 0
Garden Plain 2, SE of Saline 0
Hoisington 2, Marysville 0
SE of Saline 2, Marysville 1
(20-25, 25-20, 25-19)
Garden Plain 2, Hoisington 1
(25-12, 26-28, 25-17)
Hillsboro 2, Wellsville 0
Silver Lake 2, Cherokee SE 0
Hillsboro 2, Silver Lake 1
(25-23, 15-25, 25-20)
Wellsville 2, Cherokee SE 1
(15-25, 25-18, 25-13)
Silver Lake 2, Wellsville 0
Hillsboro 2, Cherokee SE 0