Sequim High School’s volleyball squad celebrates a win over Kingston in the West Central District tourney on Nov. 10 at Franklin Pierce High School in Tacoma. The Wolves went on to beat Olympic to earn a spot at the 2A state tournament in Yakima set for Nov. 19-20. Pictured, from left, are Jordan Hegtvedt, Allie Gale, Angel Wagner, Arianna Stoval, Jolene Vaara, Kendall Hastings, Kelsi Bergeson, Malory Morey, Sammie Bacon, Kaila Spaulding and Mia Coudriet. Photo by Wendy Morey

Sequim High School’s volleyball squad celebrates a win over Kingston in the West Central District tourney on Nov. 10 at Franklin Pierce High School in Tacoma. The Wolves went on to beat Olympic to earn a spot at the 2A state tournament in Yakima set for Nov. 19-20. Pictured, from left, are Jordan Hegtvedt, Allie Gale, Angel Wagner, Arianna Stoval, Jolene Vaara, Kendall Hastings, Kelsi Bergeson, Malory Morey, Sammie Bacon, Kaila Spaulding and Mia Coudriet. Photo by Wendy Morey

Volleyball: Wolves top familiar foes for state tourney berth

Surviving some curious seeding, some erratic serving and a slow start, the Sequim girls rallied in the 2A bi-district tournament on Nov. 13 to qualify for the state 2A volleyball tournament at the SunDome in Yakima this weekend.

It is the first time Sequim volleyball has qualified for state since 2016, though the Wolves had a strange route to get there.

Sequim defeated Olympic 3-0 (25-16, 25-20, 25-22) on Saturday to finish in the top six at bi-district, though coach Jennie Webber Heilman said the Wolves were behind in all three games. It was the third time the Wolves have beaten the Trojans this year.

Webber Heilman said her players seemed nervous in the match, missing 11 serves.

“That is not normal,” she said.

However, Sequim (13-7) overcame its troublesome serving with good passing and a lot of aces. Allie Gale, Jordan Hegtvedt, Jolene Vaara, Malory Morey and Kendall Hastings combined for 21 aces.

Hastings in particular had a huge game statistically. She had a seven-ace run in the first game and finished with nine aces overall. She also had 12 kills, six assists and five digs.

Morey was the only perfect server on the day, going 12-for-12 from the service line. Gale served 13-for-15 with four aces, 12 assists and nine digs.

Hegtvedt served 9-for-10 with 13 digs. Vaara served 8-for-10 with three aces, six kills and 12 digs.

Sequim, which finished second in the Olympic 2A League, got a No. 8 seed to begin with and was forced to play No. 1 seed Washington in the opening bi-district match on Nov. 10.

Washington, despite being the top seed, didn’t even make it to the bi-district finals and can finished third. The No. 2 seed Sammamish out of the KingCo League went 0-2 and didn’t come close to qualifying for state. No. 7 seed Enumclaw took second at the bi-district championship. The tournament was full of odd seeds such as these.

“I think they were going way too much on RPI,” Webber-Heilman said.

The Wolves lost that opening match 3-0 (25-18, 25-20, 25-19) , putting Sequim in the consolation bracket. There, they suddenly had a very doable path to state against low seeds and teams they had already beaten this season.

In their second match — also held Nov. 10 — the Wolves got to play Olympic League foe Kingston, which Sequim had already beaten twice this year. Sequim took care of business, 3-1 (26-24, 25-14, 20-25, 25-23).

That set up the winner-to-state, loser-out match Saturday against Olympic.

“It’s nice to survive this season with all the COVID and other things going on,” Webber-Heilman said. “It’s nice to make it to state. Hopefully, the players understand how rare it is.”

Webber-Heilman said the Wolves will be taking four extra younger players to state so they can experience the atmosphere at the SunDome.

Sequim lost out on a seeding con flip to White River, who also went 2-1 at districts to tie for fifth place, and opens the state tourney as the No. 14 seed at 7 a.m. Friday, Nov. 19, taking on third-seeded Ridgefield. Winner of that match move on to the quarterfinals to play the winner of the Lynden/Enumclaw match at 4:15 p.m. that day, while losing teams of those matches play in a loser-out consolation game at 2:15 p.m. Friday.

Sequim’s Malory Morey, left, blocks a Kingston spike attempt on Nov. 2. Sequim beat the Buccaneers and Olympic at the district tourney to secure a state 2A tourney berth this past weekend. Sequim Gazette file photo by Emily Matthiessen

Sequim’s Malory Morey, left, blocks a Kingston spike attempt on Nov. 2. Sequim beat the Buccaneers and Olympic at the district tourney to secure a state 2A tourney berth this past weekend. Sequim Gazette file photo by Emily Matthiessen

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