Crimson Bears top Falcons for Region V volleyball championship

Thunder Mountain sweeps Ketchikan
The Juneau-Douglas Crimson Bears volleyball team poses after winning the Region V Championship in Petersburg on Saturday. Kneeling left-to-right are Gracie Meiners, Maddie McKeown, Kayla Balovich. Standing l-r are Chelsea Peterson, Kaitlin Fagerstrom, Tori Fogg, Cora Bontrager, Brandi Hall, Rachel Doogan, Amberli Fitka, and Sally Paul.

The capital city high school volleyball teams showed their dominance at the Region V Championships in Petersburg on Saturday, prolonging the career of one senior class and leaving behind a dynasty-to-be by the other.


Juneau-Douglas High School senior Chelsea Peterson powered the Crimson Bears to and through the title game with an assortment of jump serves and kill shots.

JDHS swept the Falcons in three games, 26-24, 25-8 and 25-11.

“It was a close game there at the end,” JDHS coach Leslie Knight said. “Both teams really played hard. We are very excited to be going north to state.”

Peterson lead with 25 attacks resulting in 15 kills and had 13 service attempts with 4 aces and 13 digs; Gracie Meiners had 6 kills, 11 digs and 3 aces; Rachel Doogan 4 kills, 3 digs; Cora Bontrager 9 digs, Sally Paul 4 aces, 2 digs; Tori Fogg 1 ace, 2 digs; Kayla Balovich 3 kills, Kaitlin Fagerstrom 2 kills, and Maddie McKeown 1 kill, 2 blocks.

Jenna Luhrs tallied 7 kills for Thunder Mountain, Kendra Wittwer added 4 kills, Katrina Greenlief and Makayla Pierce 3 kills, Kylie Ibias 2 kills.

“Our communication was key,” Knight said. “And our back row play. Everything starts with our passing.”

The Falcons began tourney play on Friday with a stunning five-game match win over Ketchikan. After dropping the first two games 26-24 and 25-23, the Falcons persevered by scores of 26-24, 25-23 and 15-12.

Jenna Luhrs tallied 7 kills for the Falcons; Katrina Greenlief, Kendra Wittwer, Kylie Ibias and Makayla Pierce added 5 kills; Danielle Steinman had 3 aces.

“The girls played hard and earned every win,” TMHS coach Adriana Northcutt said. “We played a ton of games. The disadvantage for us was that, after battling Ketchikan, we had a very short break and turned around and played against JDHS, who were fresh.”

JDHS topped the Falcons 25-17, 25-15, 25-21.

For the Falcons, Wittwer had 8 kills, Ibias 4, Manning 3 and Montez had 3 aces.

Peterson topped the Crimson Bears with 16 kills, 19 digs and 1 ace; Balovich had 10 kills and 3 aces; and Doogan 10 digs.

“We were smart with the ball,” Northcutt said. “It was tough mentally to push through the tiredness of the early matches but we are all pretty proud. The girls did everything they had trained to do. It was just hard to keep up with JDHS.”

After that loss the Falcons had to play another early game Saturday against Ketchikan for the right to work back into the title match. The Falcons again went to five games, winning the match 26-24, 25-21, 27-29, 15-25, and 16-14.

Ibias tallied 6 aces and 4 kills; Greenlief 4 aces and 5 kills; Luhrs 8 kills; pierce 11 kills; Wittwer 5 kills, and Manning 4 kills.

These tournament wins were the first time in TMHS history the Falcons have taken a match from the Ketchikan Kings.

Crimson Bears Peterson, Doogan and Meiners were selected to the All-Tournament team along with the Falcons’ Ibias and Hickok, and Ketchikan’s Jayley Taylor and Tylynn Ward.

Doogan won the tournament’s serving contest with an unheard of perfect score and Peterson won the passing contest. The Crimson Bears will travel to Anchorage for the state tournament on Thursday.


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