FARWELL – The Beavers won their fourth straight district title last week with a pair of straight set victories over Pinconning and Houghton Lake at Farwell High School. Beaverton opened up play on Wednesday night against a familiar foe, Pinconning. The teams had played twice during the Jack Pine Conference season with the Beavers taking both of those matches.
Molly Gerow had 18 kills and 13 digs against the Spartans. Mady Pahl added 34 assists, and Alexis Grove had 9 digs. Becca Wirt and Faith Danielak each had a good night up front with nine and five kills respectively. With the 25-15, 25-17, 25-20 win the Beavers moved on to face Houghton Lake on Thursday in the district finals.
Houghton Lake is also a familiar foe. They were members of the Jack Pine Conference until the fall of 2019. The Bobcats won the conference title in 2018 their last season as members of the Jack Pine. They have continued their rivalry on the court playing each other in the first round of the Regionals last season and again during the regular season this year with the Beavers taking both matches.
Houghton Lake really didn’t have a chance Thursday night. The Beavers came out focused and jumped out to a 11-2 lead in the first game on their way to a 25-12 win. The Bobcats enjoyed their only lead of the night early in the second set before Beaverton tied it at 6-6 and went on to win 25-13. Up 2-0 going into the third set the Beavers left no doubt when Hannah Stearns served eight straight points before Houghton Lake got on the board. Beaverton had a 11-6 lead when Gerow’s turn to serve came around. She kept the Bobcats off balance serving 14 straight points to finish out the set 25-6 and the match 3-0.
Pahl had another good night setting up her teammates finishing with 30 assists. Gerow added 18 kills, seven digs and five aces. Stearns had five kills and three aces. Wirt and Leiyah Mungin had five and four kills respectively while Grove had another seven digs. “Houghton Lake is a good team, but we were able to get them out of system enough to give us some good looks on offense,” said Coach Steve Evans. “We took advantage on offense and served well.”
The Beavers are currently 29-5 on the season. They travel to Manton tonight where they will face Traverse City St. Francis in the Regional semi-finals. This should be an exciting matchup. The Beavers are ranked number five and the Gladiators are number seven in the latest Michigan Interscholastic Volleyball Coaches Association rankings. The teams played earlier in the season in a match that Beaverton won handily, but which is probably not representative of the type of team St. Francis has as they were missing several key players due to illness and other commitments.