The Christian Academy volleyball team rallied from two sets down to top Male 24-26, 16-25, 25-22, 25-14, 15-12 on Wednesday in a Seventh Regional Tournament semifinal at Valley High School.
The Centurions (26-12) will play for the regional title on Thursday against Sacred Heart (26-12), which defeated four-time defending state champion Assumption in the other semifinal.
After losing the first two sets, Christian Academy coach Patty Ernst gave her team some words of advice.
“I just told them to play to win,” she said.
With that the Centurions staked out to big leads in the next two sets. They led 24-18 in the third before Male scored four straight to claw back in it, but the Centurions built a 16-4 lead in the fourth set to cruise to the tiebreaker.
Christian Academy never trailed in the final set, with Caroline Rassenfoss scoring five kills in the final set alone, including the game-winning point.
“We just thought we needed to stay positive,” the junior said. “Having a good mindset really helped us out.”
The No. 22 Bulldogs finished the season with an 18-18 record.
“The game is all about momentum and spurts,” coach Bill Payne said. “They wound up having more spurts than we did. It just wasn’t our night.”