The volleyball playoffs have not been kind to West Platte in the past.
The Bluejays reached postseason for the 17th time on Saturday, Oct. 27, in the Class 1 sectional in Sedalia, Mo. First up for West Platte was Rock Port and despite history being against them, the Bluejays pulled out a victory.
The winning wasn’t done for the Bluejays, who then bested Sedalia Sacred Heart in three sets to reach the state semifinal for the first time in school history.
The Bluejays had one total playoff win in school history and doubled it on the same day.
West Platte now heads to Cape Girardeau on Friday, Nov. 2. to play for a shot at the state championship.
“This has definitely been a crazy week for us,” West Platte coach Amber Guthrie said. “Lots of excitement and tears of joy. I can’t think of a more deserving group of girls than these ones. They have shown tremendous heart all year, and that didn’t change on Saturday. They started out in a pretty big deficit in our second match of the day, but really showed their will to win when they came back and took games two and three. It truly was an amazing day.”
The Bluejays (29-5-2) will play Calvary Lutheran (25-9-2) at 9 a.m., against Adavance (33-2-1) at 11 a.m. and Billings (26-5-2) at 1 p.m.
West Platte opened up sectional play at Sacred Heart High School with a showdown against Rock Port and won 25-15 and 25-20.
Daire Stelljes had 10 kills, while Lara Lieske had nine. Faith Stevens contributed 13 assists and Zoe Buckler finished in double figures with 11.
Lexie Smither had 12 digs and Lieske added nine.
West Platte initially struggled in the quarterfinal against a tall Sedalia Sacred Heart team, falling 25-20 in the opening set.
The Bluejays bounced back to win the next two, 25-22 and 25-10.
Lieske had a team-high 12 kills, while Smither added nine, while Stevens had 22 of the team’s 31 assists. Lieske and Stevens had two blocks each.
Digs were plentiful for the Bluejays — 63 total — with Stevens paving the way with 14. Grace Stevens had 13 and Lieske added 11.
That was the 13th straight win for the Bluejays — the longest active winning streak among the four semifinalists.
The winning streak started on Oct. 4 against Plattsburg in a KCI Conference game and then the team won the Sherwood Tournament. That came not long after 3-2-1 showing in the Midway Tournament, where the Bluejays battled Kansas City East, Pembroke Hill and St. Joseph Benton.
“We went to a tournament at Midway and were competing very well against some bigger schools,” Guthrie said. “That really opened our eyes to just what potential this group had, and they have only grown from there.”