Wildcat volleyball continues to win

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SNOQUALMIE - The Mount Si Wildcats continued their domination of the Kingco 3A's bottom feeders last Monday, defeating Liberty in four games, 25-18, 25-15, 14-25, 25-19. However, the win came at a huge price as senior Gina Zanella, whose play has been key to the Wildcats' early success, tore her anterior cruciate ligament in her knee in a collision with a teammate and is out for the remainder of the year.

In Zanella's place was defensive specialist Emily White, who picked up 21 assists. Marissa Hill scored 18 kills and added to the defensive effort with 15 digs.

Last Wednesday, the Wildcats hosted Interlake for the second time this season.

Interlake served as the home team for the Wednesday match - due to construction at their school that has them on the road - but home cooking was not in the cards for the Saints, as Mount Si leveled Interlake in a three-game sweep.

"[I] felt that it was an overall team effort. I felt that our young girls came in and did an absolutely outstanding job. I was extremely impressed with their composure - sophomores, freshmen on our court - and I thought Marissa [Hill] and Emily White had extremely awesome leadership, and you know what, what more can you ask for in that sense?" said an elated Wildcats' coach Bonnie Foote, as her squad downed a relatively lifeless Saints team 25-8, 25-14, 25-19.

Game one was all about the serving of Hill. The senior star fired seven consecutive service aces at the Saints, and was close to an eighth before referees called her for serving over the back line. That performance propelled the Wildcats to a quick first-game victory.

"We've been practicing really hard on our serve-receive and I think [we] really did a great job of keeping our goal," Hill said.

Overall, the Wildcats' servers logged 13 aces in that first game. The final two games were a little closer, but in the end, contributions from newer players, particularly sophomore Faith Hutcherson, keyed those victories as well.

"I really tried my hardest, and I've been working on some stuff, and since Gina [Zanella] is gone, the whole team's really had to pick up for the loss, so I'm just trying to make her happy," said Hutcherson.

Another new player who made an impact in the match was freshman Wesley Eand. Called up from JV, she played the libero, the defensive specialist position, in the third game and did well.

"I love Wesley. She's great, and she's really got a gift for the game," Hutcherson said.

The final stretch of games wraps up this week with senior night against Newport, then the final regular season match next Monday at Mercer Island.

Foote has a plan in mind going into these final games.

"I think the biggest thing for us is we need to find somebody who can get the ball to our hitters and, obviously working on serving tough. Our serving's getting better, it's consistent, tough serving, passing the ball consistently, but most importantly, [we've] just got to come out and compete. I want us to play our hardest and give our best effort," said the coach.

Hutcherson is ready.

"I have to work on the fundamentals and just the basics, really, so then everything else can tie together," the sophomore said.

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