The Perfect Season: Roadrunners head to the championship

Zakeiba Ofuso #6 high-fives our mascot. Photo by Elliot Pond
Zakeiba Ofuso #6 high-fives our mascot. Photo by Elliot Pond

Linn-Benton Volleyball (LBVB) capped off their incredible regular season by picking up a victory at home against Lane Community College on Nov. 9. This win pushed them to 14-0 in the conference and an unbelievable 39-0 record for the season.

Coming into the game, it was clearly not just another regular season game. This last home game was the last obstacle in the way of an undefeated season, something that doesn’t come along so easy.

“We definitely would have been disappointed if we lost because we would have been one game short of a perfect season,” said Sophomore Alyvia Sams. The Roadrunners’ opponent, Lane, was sitting at the bottom of the Southern Region of the Northwest Athletic Conference (NWAC) with a record of 2-11. It could’ve been very easily a “trap game” for LBVB. A trap game is when a sports team that is heavily favored against a lower team goes in overconfident and ends up losing the game. However, the Roadrunners showed no intention of letting this game slip away, winning three sets to zero.

Set one was relatively close, as after the first 18 points of the match neither team had been leading by more than two points. LBVB was able to pull away towards the end finishing off the set on a 19 to eight run, lead by three kills from sophomore Mindy Wilmes.

Again, the first half of set two was close; the teams were tied at 9-9. The Roadrunners got hot late and finished set two with a 16-7 run, this time lead by Freshman Katie Allen who had five kills during the late run. Set three was very similar again, as the set started close and finished with LBVB going on a 15 to six point run. Sophomores Mindy Wilmes and Chase Bohman ended the game with 13 and 12 kills, respectively. Freshman Montanna Gubrud lead the team with 37 assists and sophomore Alyvia Sams finished with a team-high 16 digs.

Preparing for the 2016 NWAC Volleyball Championship tournament, the Roadrunners will leave Wednesday, Nov. 16, to practice at the Greater Tacoma Convention and Trade Center in Tacoma, Wash. The tournament will take place Thursday, Nov. 17 through Sunday, Nov. 20. It is a double-elimination style tournament, meaning two losses and you’re eliminated. There will be 16 teams competing, the top four from each conference. There will also be sophomore all-star matches that will take place Sunday at 10 a.m. and noon and then an eventual championship match around 2 p.m.

“We will be scouting and prepping for each team as we play them,” said Head Coach Jayme Frazier. “We will try not to veer from the game plan that has got us to this point which is to stay focused on the very next match and team ahead of us.”

Four day passes for the NWAC tournament will cost $35 ($25 for students) or $15 for one day passes ($13 for students). The Roadrunners will be looking to finish this season by winning the whole tournament and adding onto an already incredible season.

Story by Nick Fields

Photos by Elliot Pond