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Pioneers senior Brooke Womack elevates with five-straight third set kills in victory on 'Pink Out' night

PMG PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER KEIZUR - Sandy volleyball beat Barlow 3-1 in a rivalry rematch Wednesday, Oct. 5.  It was a one-woman rally late in the third set for Sandy volleyball as they took on their rivals in a heated, nail-biting rematch.

Senior Brooke Womack was stellar throughout against visiting Barlow Wednesday, Oct. 5, but in that third period she had an extra spring in her step. Down two points, with the series tied 1-1, Womack fired off five-straight kills to secure the set win.

"There are nights you have to step up," Womack said. "I know I can take a risk, go for that big play, because my team is behind me all the way."

PMG PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER KEIZUR - Sandy senior Brooke Womack, left, scored 5-straight kills in the third period to help power the Pioneers to a win. Sandy bested Barlow 3-1 (23-25, 25-20, 25-23, 25-22) in a Mt. Hood Conference game decided by just eight points.

"We needed that win tonight, we have been thinking about this game since they beat us earlier in the year," said Coach Maggie Young.

The last time the two sides met, Sandy (9-8, 5-4 League) squandered a 2-0 lead on the road and watched the Bruins celebrate an improbable reverse sweep. That result might have been echoing in their heads during the fourth set as Barlow (8-5, 6-3 League) were threatening another comeback. But the Pioneers have been bolstering their mental game, finding the fortitude to close out matches and secure victories as postseason looms.

PMG PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER KEIZUR - Pioneer senior Lily Wolf spoke during a crucial timeout in the fourth set.  So in that set, needing just four points to win, Young called a timeout.

"In that huddle I stepped back and let the players lead the conversation," she said. "They pulled together."

"We just said one pass, one set, one kill — that is it," Womack added. "We have to finish."

The Pioneers staved off the comeback, powered in large part by Barlow junior Olivia Brown who was firing off her own powerful kills.

"Last time we gave it up, so it was special to win tonight against our rivals, especially during the 'Pink Out,'" Womack said.

PMG PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER KEIZUR - Barlow sophomore Addi Knight made an athletic play at the net. Sandy donned pink jerseys and held a fundraiser before the start of the game. They raffled off baskets and gave flowers and hugs to those in the crowd who survived breast cancer. Senior Sydney Brewster also addressed the crowd and shared statistics around breast cancer.

The third set was a rocky start for Sandy, who fell behind 8-2 early. But a pair of kills from sophomore Maia Roach and another from Womack got the Pioneers back into positive momentum.

Then in the fourth Sandy roared out to a 19-10 lead, including a highlight reel score from senior Skylar Leydekkers who made a one-handed, diving dig that had her falling into the bench.

It was nearly a runaway in that final set. Womack had two-near misses on kills down the stretch, and the Bruins defense started to survive those monster hits and turn them into sneaky points. Barlow junior Olivia Brown was active late, firing off her own powerful kills. But that Sandy timeout got them on track to secure the win.

PMG PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER KEIZUR - The Bruins couldnt complete another comeback victory over Sandy Wednesday, Oct. 5.

PMG PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER KEIZUR - Barlow junior Morgan Calcagno on a serve.

PMG PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER KEIZUR - The Pioneers beat Barlow 3-1 Wednesday, Oct. 5.


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