The Cicero Prep Varsity Volleyball Cardinal Team took on ASU Prep (Poly) in a CAA State Championship Quarterfinal match last night. The Lady Centurions started out with an 8-1 lead in the first set but ASU Prep battled back and tied the game at 17, moving on to win the set 25-23.
In the second set, Cicero Prep took the lead and never looked back, winning 25-15. Sophomore Ari Flores and Freshman Taylor Peters each had 4 kills in this set while Sophomore Kruthy Shankar had 2 kills, Freshman Anna Gilligan had 1 kill, 1 block, and 2 digs, and Freshman libero Qin Nebgen had 5 digs. The Lady Centurions fell behind in the 3rd set but slowly climbed back, taking over the lead at 18-17 and going on to win 25-23 with Gilligan scoring the final point with an ace.
In the 4th set, the score remained close with the lead changing several times. The score was tied at 15-15 when ASU Prep rallied and scored 6 unanswered points, going on to win the set 25-17 and taking the match into a 5th and final set. In the 5th set, kills by Raegan Peters and Flores put Cicero Prep out in front with a 4-1 lead. ASU Prep fought back and took over the lead until a kill and an ace by Flores tied the score at 7-7. Following a kill by T. Peters, a block by Sophomore Jessica Skemp, a dig by Nebgen, and a kill by R. Peters, Cicero Prep took the lead 11-8. ASU Prep scored 3 unanswered points and a few volleys later, the Lady Centurions found themselves behind at match point, 14-12.
With no timeouts remaining, Cicero Prep rallied following a kill by T. Peters. R. Peters rotated into serve with match point on the line and was the steady force the team needed to pull off a victory. Following 2 kills by T. Peters and an error by ASU Prep, the Lady Centurions pulled ahead 15-14. R. Peters then served an ace to seal the victory!
Cicero Prep moves on to a CAA State Championship Semi-Final match against EVAC at South Mountain Community College on Saturday, October 28th at 1pm.