ATHENA — The Weston-McEwen volleyball team earned a wild-card spot in the 2A state tournament last week. The TigerScots are making the most of their opportunity.
W-M went on the road last Saturday and knocked off Sunset Conference champion Coquille 25-9, 25-21, 25-18 in the first round to advance to the main bracket Friday and Saturday at Ridgeview High School in Redmond.
“Any time you are in the final eight, it’s a good day,” W-M coach Shawn White said. “We played really well against Coquille. The last two sets, we finished on 9-2 runs.”
The No. 10 TigerScots (18-11) will take on the No. 2-ranked Central Linn Cobras (20-3) at 6 p.m. Friday night in the quarterfinals.
“They were third last year,” White said. “We know a little bit of what we are getting into. The girls are ready to compete and do the best we can.”
W-M is making its 14th trip to the final eight in 15 years. The TigerScots finished sixth last year, and the competition is just as tough, but the Blue Mountain Conference schedule of three-team Saturdays will come into play.
“In the state tournament field, there are no easy teams,” White said. “We win our first match, we play back-to-back. That’s where our league schedule helps us out — that is an advantage for us. I like our chances.”
The TigerScots are led by first-team BMC selections Jesse Manning and Emma Olson, but a good portion of the team has state experience.
“Everybody at least traveled with us to state last year,” White said. “They know what it’s like. They are aware and ready.”
The BMC has three teams in the final eight. League champion Union is in the same half of the bracket as W-M and will play Vernonia. Grant Union, which is on the opposite side of the bracket, opens against Portland Christian in a rematch of last year’s title match, which the Royals won in five sets.