CLOVERDALE -- Cloverdale's volleyball squad capped off an impressive season Thursday night, hosting Linton for senior night in the final regular season match for the Clovers.
A tough battle ensued between the Class 2A No. 9 hosts and the Miners, but after four sets, Cloverdale took their win total to 21 on the season, knocking the visitors off 25-23, 11-25, 25-20 and 26-24.
The hosts initially jumped out to a three point lead early in the first set but were dragged back in by the Miners into a 9-all tie.
The two squads traded points back and forth, tying seven times before the Clovers finally took a 20-18 advantage and made the lead stick to take the first set by two points.
Linton responded by knocking Cloverdale around in the second set, jumping out to a 9-1 lead and never looked back in battering the Clovers 25-11.
Cloverdale responded well in the third set to take an early three point lead but again found themselves pegged back by the visitors.
The two squads tied the match eight times in the third set and, much like the first set, Cloverdale took a lead at 20-18 that stuck as the hosts took the third set 25-20.
Set four could have been a repeat of the previous set early on as the Clovers took a three point lead and watched Linton reel them back in.
The Miners, however, nearly ran away after a six point swing saw them take a 17-12 lead.
Cloverdale responded with a five point run that tied the match at 17-17 and took the lead for the third time of the night at 20-18.
Linton rallied to tie the match at 23-all, but missed a serve long. The Miners tied the score once again at 24-all but two long shots gave Cloverdale a 26-24 win in the final set and a 3-1 win in the match.
Bradanne Toney produce a monstrous night on the attack, nailing 30 kills, 13 assists and six blocks. Bristy Skiles set up a number of those attacks with 39 assists and seven digs.
Lindsay Robson added 11 points and 10 digs, while Rebekah Jordan chipped in 11 digs. Paige Gruener had eight digs, five points and five kills, while Taylor Jones had eight kills and nine digs and Adrianna Patterson added seven kills.
Cloverdale head coach Kathy Moore said the season was a major success.
"We finished the season 21-5, which is the best record here since the 1983 sectional winning team. We're pretty proud and we feel very grateful for the no-quit attitude of this team," Moore said.
"Give Linton a lot of credit. They hustled and dug up a lot of things. They fought for every point and we were fortunate enough to come out with the win.
"Bradanne's an excellent hitter, but she can't hit it if people don't pass the ball to her. One of our focuses has been getting the ball up, because we can get the kills. Taylor, Paige, Adrianna and Bradanne can all hit the ball," Moore added.
Moore praised the work of the team and the support they received this season.
"I'm proud of these kids. They've worked hard. They did extra work this summer. They really stay together as a group and I'm very grateful for that," Moore said.
"We've had great fans and parents. The school has supported us. The band was playing tonight. It's an all school thing and it's been a fun experience for all of us."
Moore also celebrated seniors Toney, Jones, Gruener, Skiles, Sasha Melnichuk and managers Katie Walters and Miranda Tate.
"Sasha is a foreign exchange student who is playing volleyball for the first time. Katie and Miranda played with this group when they were in eighth grade, so the seniors have hung together as a group over the years," Moore said.
"They work hard at trying to keep everybody together. It's been a real pleasure watching them. It's fun to win but there is pressure that comes with that."
Moore said that the group had at least one more goal as they entered sectional play next Saturday at Covenant Christian High School.
"We're looking forward to the sectionals. We'll go up Thursday and watch and play Cascade on Saturday. The two squads always play tough. It always seems to go to the fifth set," Moore said.
"We have got to be on it. It's a new season. It's either one and done or one and go on. That's the bottom line."
We feel confident going into sectionals. We feel we can win the sectional. We need to beat Cascade first and, if we do that, then deal with whichever team comes out of the other half of the bracket."
Linton 23 25 20 24
Cloverdale 25 11 25 26