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VOLLEYBALL: Christian Faith loses in state title match to Tekoa-Oaksdale
The Christian Faith High School volleyball team came very close to winning the program's first-ever Class 1B state championship.
But the Eagles fell a little short in the title match Saturday, losing to top-ranked Tekoa-Oaksdale in four games inside the Yakima Valley SunDome, 24-26, 25-12, 25-15, 25-16. It was the third-straight 1B state championship for Tekoa-Oakesdale.
The loss to the Nighthawks ended Christian Faith's state run with a 3-1 record. The Eagles (21-7 overall) landed in the championship match after wins over Three Rivers Christian, Pateros and an impressive four-set victory over Pomeroy in the semifinals earlier Saturday, 25-17, 25-23, 21-25, 25-21.
As they have been all season, Christian Faith was led by Katrice Pond. The 6-foot junior from Federal Way finished the four state tournament matches with an impressive 87 kills, including 25 during the loss to Tekoa-Oaksdale. She also had 24 during the semifinal win over Pomeroy.
Senior Freda Ireigbe also had an impressive state-tournament run. The 5-foot-11 senior from Tacoma finished with 39 kills in the four matches. Auburn's Ciera Zimmerman ended up with 126 assists, 17 kills and 44 digs.
Christian Faith has developed into a dynasty on the volleyball court. It was their fifth-straight appearance at the 1B state tournament. The Eagles have also won five-straight SeaTac League titles.
It was the second time Christian Faith has played in the state championship match. The Eagles finished second to Almira Coulee Hartline in 2010.
This year's team included Samantha Tercero, Jasmine Tercero, Zimmerman, Pond, Ireigbe, Simran Gill, Lana DeGuzman, Emma Cooper, Kristinne Aguilar, Alana Jennings, Angie Justmann, Yolanda Diaz and Harsukhem Grewal.
The team was coached by Stephanie Pond, who was assisted by Steve Arbuthnot (who is a Federal Way Police detective), Brianna Lusink and Letty Hriczo.
Christian Faith cruised on the opening day of competition Friday inside the Yakima Valley SunDome with straight-set wins over Three Rivers Christian and Pateros.
The Eagles beat Three Rivers, 25-13, 25-11, 25-13, with Pond (17) and Ireigbe (10) combining for 27 kills. Christian Faith has a little tougher time with Pateros in the quarterfinals winning, 28-26, 27-25, 25-19. Pond tallied 22 kills and four aces and Ireigbe finished with 11. Zimmerman led the way with 30 assists.