Lake Oswegos season ends as Barlow puts together a stellar effort to record the sweep

The Lake Oswego volleyball team came up just short in its bid to make the state tournament at Liberty High School this year. After sweeping a feisty Thurston team last week, Lake Oswego ran into a determined Barlow squad on Saturday and fell 25-14, 25-17, 25-14.

Against Thurston, Lake Oswego didn't play its best volleyball of the season but stayed mentally strong to grind out a 25-19, 25-21, 25-19 victory.

Thurston played very strong defense and put the ball in play against the Lakers. But Lake Oswego stayed consistent and efficient on offense to preserve the victory.

“It's been the story of our season. We did what we needed to do to get the sweep but they definitely challenged us,” coach Christy Burnett said.

The Lakers then advanced to take on Barlow on Saturday at home with a berth in the quarterfinals on the line.

Barlow was on its game from the very first point. Lake Oswego did its best to hang with the Bruins in the opening set.

“We definitely had high expectations with being ranked in the top-eight for most of the season,” Burnett said.

Barlow opened up a 13-10 lead midway through the set but then closed on an impressive run, winning 12 of the last 16 points for the victory.

Lake Oswego tried to rally in the second set, taking an early 4-2 on a kill from Taylor Beckman. A kill from Heather Pippus then put the Lakers up 8-7 but Barlow then started to pull away again, capitalizing on some Lake Oswego errors.

Barlow took a four-point lead midway through the set and the teams then traded side-outs as Barlow's hitters continued to find the gaps in Lake Oswego's defense.

Barlow won the final three points of the set to go up 2-0.

“Give all credit to Barlow. They outplayed us. They were on fire and they didn't slow down,” Burnett said.

In the third set, the Bruins' terrific defense continued. Barlow had four early blocks to take an 18-6 lead at one point. Erika Treske and Pippus each had a pair of kills late in the set but the Lakers couldn't rally.

“That definitely wasn't the match we were expecting,” Burnett said.

Lake Oswego graduates three seniors in Treske, Victoria Kong and Abby Gray, one of the state's top setters. But the Lakers return the majority of their hitters and blockers and should be highly competitive again next fall.

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