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The Sacred Heart Cathedral and St. Ignatius girls volleyball teams will meet in the Central Coast Section Division III championship for the second-consecutive year, after both schools swept semifinal matches on Thursday at Valley Christian High School in San Jose.
The result may have been the same, but the rivals had entirely different experiences.
The top-seeded Irish (29-7) won with ease over host Valley Christian 25-20, 25-7, 25-10, while the third-seeded Wildcats (26-11) needed to go to extra points in the final two games of their 25-18, 28-26, 26-24 win over second-seeded Aptos.
The Irish got 19 combined kills from junior outside hitters Courtney Wong and Sarah Jones, five blocks from freshman middle blocker Madison Murtagh and three aces from senior setter Ariana Dirige, but the individual spotlight shined brightest on St. Ignatius senior outside hitter Claire Healy. Healy had 20 crucial kills and 12 digs for the defending CCS champions.
Both teams also sealed bids in the CIF State Championship Tournament with the semifinal wins.