Vikings cruise to seventh straight semifinal


YAKIMA — For the seventh consecutive year, the Mossyrock Vikings are back in the state semifinals. And for the second straight year, they defeated Northport along the way in the quarterfinals, as the Vikings topped the Mustangs 25-16, 25-12, 25-18 on Wednesday night.

“I’m very proud of this group,” Mossyrock coach Alex Nelson said. “A top four or better finish is amazing. It’s an accomplishment for any team to get there.”

It’s another accomplishment in what Nelson originally described as a rebuilding year, as several younger players have stepped into bigger roles throughout the course of the season.

Wednesday was no different. Most notably, sophomore Adyson Barrows led the team with five aces while sophomore Renzy Marshall was second on the team with seven digs.

“It’s nice to see them reaching our expectations,” Nelson said.

Nelson was quick to also give credit to her coaching staff, which she says has helped elevate every player on the team.

“Sometimes they don’t believe that they can do it right away, but we convince them pretty well,” Nelson said with a smile. “There’s four of us that are constantly pushing these guys to believe in themselves and expect more of themselves, and they’re doing that.”

It wasn’t just the underclassmen having success on Wednesday for the Vikings. Erin Cournyer logged 14 kills, 10 assists, six digs and four aces, Delaney Marshall added seven assists and three aces, while Abbie Lovan had a team-high 11 digs.

The Vikings quest for a state title continues tomorrow, when they’ll take on No. 2 Neah Bay, which will enter the game with a perfect 21-0 record. That semifinal is set to start at noon.

A win would put Mossyrock in the state championship at 7:30, while a loss would put them in the third-place game at 3:30.