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Cougars defeated West Linn 3-2 Tuesday night in the program's first win over the Lions since 2010.

PMG PHOTO: DEREK WILEY - Canby senior Ruby Kayser had 40 assists Thursday night against Tualatin.

Canby honored its volleyball seniors Thursday night with a 3-0 win over Tualatin.

"I don't think it's really hit me yet," said senior Ruby Kayser, who has started for the Cougars for four years. "I've had a lot of great memories in this gym. We've had a great week and I'm glad we could pull out this win for the last one. It's fun. I've got a lot of family here that got to see me play. I just wanted to play hard and hopefully win so we can get that home playoff game."

The week started with Canby defeating West Linn for the first time since 2010. The Lions entered the match a perfect 12-0 in the Three Rivers League.

The Cougars won 3-2 (26-24, 16-25, 25-27, 23-25, 16-14) at West Linn.

Daley McClellan had 47 kills on 87 attempts. Kayser had 55 assists and five aces.

"That was amazing," Kayser said of defeating West Linn. "I think that was my biggest goal since I have been a freshman. First, it was take a set off of them, and we did that (in a 3-2 loss on Sept. 26) and then we had to beat them. Everyone played so hard. It was a really fun game for everyone. Beating them at their court was really awesome."

The win came after Canby took a set from No. 2 Central Catholic the previous Saturday at the West Linn tournament.

"We've been so close and actually winning one of those games is going to give us a huge boost going into the playoffs," Kayser said.

PMG PHOTO: DEREK WILEY - Canby honored its six seniors and one exchange student before Thursday's match.

Canby honored its six seniors — Kayser, Danielle Netter, Karly Bierma, Melissa Guijosa Mondragon, Natalie Doman and Arika Evans, as well as foreign exchange student Simona Giancarli.

"It was emotional because of the reality that this run is almost over," Canby coach T.J. Schlatter said. "This whole group has been together for two years and a lot of them we've had this whole time, so thinking about saying goodbye to a group that has had such an impact on the program. I can't even say how much of an impact Ruby has had on this program from day one. It's bigger I think than people realize, what she does. She carries that much weight and responsibility."

Evans sang the national anthem before the match.

"It was sad. I've gotten so close with everybody on this team," Evans said. "We are all such close friends and best friends and it helps everyday because practices are so much fun and we want to work for each other."

Kayser had 40 assists and three kills in her final regular season home game. Senior middle blockers, Doman and Bierma, had five and three kills, respectively.

"It was so much fun," Bierma said of senior night. "I love the team. We have such good chemistry right now. It was really good for us to finish it with a win in three sets. We just came off a big win at West Linn so we have that high and we're excited as a team. We've got our groove and we've worked at it the whole season to get to that top level, and we're ready to go for the playoffs. I think we're pretty confident. We've had a really good season so far and we're really close as a team. Our personalities really mesh together really well."

Mondragon finished off Tualatin by serving an ace for match point.

"I'm just happy for that group to end on a win," Schlatter said. "I'm really proud of them and what they've done."

The Cougars will now turn their attention to the playoffs, which begin Wednesday, most likely at home. OSAA's rankings freeze Saturday at 10 p.m.

The Cougars have not won a playoff game since 2010, but finished fourth in the state in 2008 and fifth in 2009.

"My biggest goal is to win that first playoff game and then just take it one game at a time," Kayser said. "I think we can go pretty far this year. I'm excited. I think we'll have a good playoff run."


Derek Wiley
Reporter
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