Dayton grabs district volleyball title, heads to State tournament

Dayton downs DeSales and Liberty Christian Saturday for the championship, and plays Wahkiakum Friday at State in Yakima.

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DAYTON - Dayton won the District volleyball title with five-set victories over DeSales and Liberty Christian here Saturday.

The Bulldogs handled the Irish, 25-16, 15-25, 25-17, 20-25, 15-10.

Kayla Turner had 12 kills and 14 assists with six serving aces in the match. McKayla Bickelhaupt recorded 14 kills, nine digs, was 21-for-22 serving with two aces; Nicole Lambert had 15 digs and was 13-for-14 serving with two aces, Amanda Melton had eight kills, Shelby Smith 11 kills, and Darcy Hall 13 assists.

Against Liberty Christian, Dayton fell behind with 26-24, 27-25 losses before rallying for 25-20, 25-16 and 15-4 victories.

Turner had 11 kills and 15 assists in the match, Melton had seven kills, Lambert 26 digs, and Bickelhaupt put up 17 kills, and was 28-for-29 serving with three aces.

Hall had 29 assists against the Patriots and was 13-for-14 serving with an ace, Jessica Tate had 10 digs and Smith was 19-for-20 with two aces.

"I'm proud of my team, they made a huge comeback," Dayton coach Shannon Turner said. "We didn't lose a district match, and if we had lost to Liberty we'd have had to play them again (after the first match Saturday). So after our first two (set) losses, I told them they had to dig deep. Everyone was tired, but they fought through it.

"This is a group of girls that work so hard," she said. "They've earned this title and I'm excited to take them to State. They're a young team."

Dayton last advanced to the State tournament in 2005, finishing third.

The Bulldogs face Wahkiakum at 9 a.m. Friday at the SunDome in Yakima in the first match of the double-elimination tournament.

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