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Blue Jays advance to WDA championship

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Jamestown's Grace Hegerle pounds the ball across the net in front of a large crowd Friday, Nov. 15, 2019, at the Jerry Meyer Arena. John M. Steiner / The Sun

An athlete's senior season sometimes ends in heartbreak. But in the case of the Jamestown High School volleyball team, goals, dreams and hearts have yet to be broken.

The Blue Jays defeated Bismarck High (25-17, 27-29, 25-18, 22-25, 15-7) on Friday in the semifinals of the WDA volleyball tournament at Jerry Meyer Arena. The squad advanced to Saturday's 4 p.m. championship match against Bismarck Century.

Head coach Sara Hegerle's two senior captains said the win was a high point of the season.

"I literally have no words, I am speechless," senior setter Kameron Selvig said.

Selvig fed the ball to the front three hitters 42 times in the five-set match to run a dynamic and powerful offense. Selvig, a second-year starting setter for the Jays, has recorded 632 assists this season to help the Blue Jays secure 24 wins.

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Jamestown's Ella Roaldson celebrates a kill over Bismarck Friday, Nov. 15, 2019, during the WDA volleyball tournament in the Jerry Meyer Arena. John M. Steiner / The Sun

A member of Jamestown's 2016, 2017 and 2018 state tournament teams, Selvig said she and her teammates have been ready for the West Region championship match since practice began in mid-August. Jamestown is headed back to the state Class A meet beginning next Thursday at the Fargdome.

"I knew from the beginning of the season that we were capable," Selvig said. "We have such a good team but just to know that you are going (to State) and to be going to the 'ship, it just means so much more.

"With this team -- I just love them all so dang much, we know our potential, we know that we are capable and tonight we showed how much we believe in ourselves."

Senior captain and outside Jessa Anderson agreed with the starting setter, saying while the state tournament was always a goal, a chance to play on Saturday of the three-day West Region tournament was a goal from the beginning.

"We wanted to bee in the WDA 'ship, it means a lot," Anderson said.

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Jamestown's Kameron Selvig set the ball Friday, Nov. 15, 2019, during the WDA volleyball tournament in the Jerry Meyer Arena. John M. Steiner / The Sun

Macy Wetsch a 5-foot-9 senior outside for BHS led her team at the net Friday night. The senior also led in three aspects of the game during the regular season with 231 kills, 277 digs and 55 aces from the service line. Wetsch put down the ball against the Jays, but the Jays' back three were ready.

"Tonight our defense and passing was so good when we are in system we are unstoppable," Selvig said.

The Jays have one more game before the state tournament next Thursday and while the team is looking to defeat the No. 1-seeded Patriots, Selvig and Anderson said the postseason is just beginning for the Jays and the team has already started looking ahead at ways to secure the elusive state championship crown.

"I think it's going to be a lot of defense and passing," Selvig said of what the team will focus on in practice. "It'll probably be a lot of aggressive serving, aggressive hitting -- a little of everything -- but I think we are going to key in on winning the serving and passing game."

WDA Volleyball Tournament

Semifinals

Jamestown 3, Bismarck 2

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BHS 17 29 18 24 7

JHS 25 27 25 22 15

Statistical leaders

BHS -- Stats not available.

JHS -- Kills: Hegerle 19, Roaldson 19, Anderson 10. Assists: Selvig 42. Digs: Schiele 27, Hegerle 16, Selvig 16 Paulson 15, Douty 11. Blocks: Anderson 4.

Century 3, Mandan 0

MAN 23 15 21

BC 25 25 25

Statistical leaders

MAN -- Kills: Lakyn Darras 12, Aleah Clarke 9, Morgan Sheldon 4, Rylee Hoesel 4. Assists: Sydney Gustavsson 32. Digs: Piper Harris 17, Darras 15, Gustavsson 11. Blocks: Darras 2, Taylor Leingang 2.

BC -- Kills: Hattie Fitterer 12, Hailey Fletcher 8, Logan Nissely 8, Julia Fitterer 7, Ella Frindley 6. Assists: Kaia Lill 23, Delani Clarke 20. Digs: Chloe Markovic 20, J. Fitterer 18, Fletcher 10, Clarke 9, Jill Dollinger 6. Aces: J. Fitterer 1, Lill 1. Blocks: Fletcher 4, Fridley 3, Fitterer 2, Sarah Fleming 1.

Gerber is a sports writer for the Jamestown Sun.
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