(2) Orange secures spot in 3A championship after exciting victory against (5) Carrboro.

(2) Orange secures spot in 3A championship after exciting victory against (5) Carrboro.

Before taking on the role of head coach this season, Hope Heverly had a significant impact on the Orange volleyball program through her fingerprints.

On Tuesday evening, she was the clear winner of the eastern regional championship trophy.

The second seed in the 3A East division successfully defended their home court by securing victory in the last two sets of a competitive five-set game against (5) Carrboro.

The Panthers’ victory over the Jaguars in the match served as retribution for their four-set defeat in August. This win also secures the Panthers a spot in Raleigh for the state championship, where they will face Kings Mountain. This will mark Orange’s first time competing for the championship since coming in second place in 2004.

Trailing 3-0 in the beginning of the first set, Ava Wilkerson played a crucial role at the net, leading to a 12-5 run for the Orange team.

Aubrey Jordan forcefully ended the set with a score of 25-20, securing a 1-0 advantage in the match.

Carrboro made a comeback in the second half of the second set and asserted their dominance in the match.

Catherine Rucker and the Jaguars turned around an 11-7 disadvantage in the second set, ultimately winning 25-21. Rucker, who has committed to Elon, tallied four kills during the decisive run.

The Jaguars maintained their momentum in the third set, with Summer Lee and Carson McGuire making impressive plays at the net and helping the team secure an early lead.

Orange slowly gained ground and narrowed the gap in the set. In an extended exchange, McGuire ended with a block to solidify their victory in the third set with a score of 28-26, giving them a 2-1 advantage in the overall match.

Orange delivered a powerful message in the fourth quarter to keep their season alive.

During the final five points of a 25-18 victory in the fourth set, Mariah Poole and Aubrey Jordan, both sophomores, dominated the front row.

As the home team continued to rack up kills and blocks, the crowd grew louder and more excited. This energy propelled the Panthers to a victory in the fifth set.

Orange gained a 9-5 lead in the set thanks to blocks by Poole and first-year player Sawyer White.

In a crucial moment, Senior Ella Wimsatt stood out in the match. As one of the top players in the state for kills, she added two more towards the end of the fifth set, bringing the Panthers closer to winning the set.

In the fifth match, Orange emerged victorious with a score of 15-9. This was the third instance where Jordan secured the last point for the team in a set win.

The Panthers have a record of 27-4 going into the state championship game. They suffered three losses during the first week of the season, starting with a 2-3 overall record in August.

The start time for Saturday’s game has not been announced yet. To stay informed about the upcoming matchups at Reynolds Coliseum in Raleigh this weekend, please refer to the link provided.

Evan Moesta and J. Mike Blake from HSOT will provide complete coverage of all four matches taking place in Raleigh on Saturday night.

Source: highschoolot.com