The Camas High School volleyball team captured first place at the Liberty tournament, in Hillsboro, Oregon, Saturday.
After losing the first two rounds of pool play, the Papermakers defeated West Salem 25-15, 25-12; Liberty 25-17, 25-20; Bend 25-19, 25-19; and Glencoe 24-26, 25-15, 15-9 in the championship match.
“I was extremely pleased. They came into this tournament after a long first week of school and practice. When they got on the bus at 6 a.m., I could see they were tired,” said Camas head coach Michelle Allen. “Their dynamic and their teamwork totally changed after we got out of pool play. When it comes to being a competitor, that’s your heart and your determination. No coach can teach that.”
Allen enjoyed watching Camas fight back to beat Glencoe after losing to the Crimson Tide earlier in the day. She will never forget watching the Papermakers celebrate after they scored the winning point.
“They all looked each other in the eyes,” Allen said. “Just that feeling and that moment: ‘Oh, we can do this.'”
On Sept. 7, Camas swept Columbia River in the Warehouse 25-14, 25-14, 25-16. Aubrey Stanton collected 20 assists and two aces. Keelie Leblanc delivered nine kills and four aces. Whitney Quist collected seven kills, Madison Pfaff had 12 digs, and Madison Gilchrist gathered nine assists and two aces. Freshman Kate Staddon earned five kills, five aces and two blocks. Sophomore Marianna Payne chipped in with four kills.
LeBlanc, Pfaff, Quist and Stanton have been playing volleyball together since they were in middle school. Gilchrist joined them in high school, and LeBlanc said she has fit right in.
“The five of us just have this amazing connection,” LeBlanc said. “State is our main goal. We don’t focus on state each game. We focus on that one game and that moment. As long as we keep climbing that ladder, I know we can make it to state at the end.”
Camas heads to Prairie today. The varsity match begins at 7 p.m.