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The Lakers see their tumultuous season come to an end in the first playoff round

The Lake Oswego volleyball team went through a lot in 2019.

   Beyond the normal ups and downs of a high school sports season and the challenges of playing in the Three Rivers League, the Lakers had to deal with the midseason loss of head coach Leejay Lee (he was cited for sex abuse in the third degree — a Class A Misdemeanor) and the transition that followed.

In the end, the Lakers steadied themselves, went 9-8 under the leadership of interim head coach Corring Fallau, finished 8-6 to place fourth in the TRL and ended their season with a 25-8, 25-20, 25-14 loss to McMinnville in the first round of the Class 6A state playoffs at McMinnville High School on Wednesday, Oct. 30.

"It's been a rough and emotionally trying season, so while we are sad it has come to a close, we are looking forward to what our future holds," Fallau said.

With the loss, the No. 16-ranked Lakers finished their year with a 16-15 overall record. The Grizzlies, meanwhile, went on to drop a 25-16, 25-17, 25-16 decision to second-seeded Central Catholic in the second playoff round on Saturday, Nov. 1, finishing their year at 15-8 after winning the Pacific Conference.

While the Lakers had been competitive all year, they were clearly not at their best in the finale at McMinnville.

"Our final game … was tough. We just didn't show up," Fallau said. "McMinnville was serving tough and we had trouble getting a decent pass. When we did, our setters and attackers had trouble connecting or just didn't put the ball away."

After their disastrous 25-8 opening-set loss at McMinnville, however, the Lakers calmed themselves, rallied and looked for all the world like they might break through in the second set before falling 25-20.

"The first set was not good and we struggled getting our footing. They were trying so hard to do well that it paralyzed them," Fallau said. "I was proud, however, how they rallied in the second set and at least competed. I was confident we would make the comeback — it just wasn't our time."

The Grizzlies, who went 11-1 on their way to the Pacific Conference title, then finished the Lakers off with a 25-16 decision in the third set.

"We hit and served so many balls out and let too many points add up between our service attempts," Fallau added. "We gave up too many points on our own errors and McMinnville was able to capitalize on that. They had great energy and just took the momentum to win."

The loss marked the final Lake Oswego match for Laker seniors Jordan Noble, Mia Gale, Julia Woolf, Jensen Kaelin and Sophia Eghdami.

Contact Sports Editor Miles Vance at 503-330-0127 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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