Auburn Mountainview begins play in state 3A tourney | Prep volleyball

Auburn Mountainview opens play in its ninth consecutive state 3A volleyball tournament at 1:30 p.m. this Friday at St Martin's University in Lacey.

The Lions (16-3) qualified for state by going 2-1 at this past weekend's district tourney at Auburn Mountainview High School.

After a first-round bye, Auburn Mountainview downed Bonney Lake 3-0.

Molly Cichosz led the way with 12 kills and two blocks, and Savanna Cappa chipped in with 21 aces. Kaylie Paul had 12 digs and two aces and Maya Williamson eight kills, three aces and two blocks.

In their second match, the Lions topped Columbia River 3-1, Kiley Lewis leading the way with 10 digs, 10 kills and two blocks. Williamson had 11 kills, five aces and four blocks and Cappa had 50 assists and 12 digs.

In the district championship match, Auburn Mountainview fell to Timberline 3-1, with Cichosz notching 14 kills and Cappa 25 assists and 10 digs.

Despite the loss, the Lions are the No. 2 seed into state.

"Needless to say, we are excited to be going to state again this year," coach Nicole Claudon said. "It has been our expectation since placing fifth last year that we would make it back again and get another trophy. We're not satisfied with just making it to state, we want to make something of our trip there.

"These girls have what it takes to win and I've seen them come back and compete in some tough battles against teams like Columbia River or Timberline," she added. "Now it's just about showing up and taking care of business. To be honest, I'm more excited this year than I was last year, this team shows a lot of promise and is peaking at the right time."

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