Top eight is pretty great: Lions make it to State tournament

The West Linn volleyball team is on a roll. Two post season wins has placed the co-Three Rivers League champion in the State tournament with seven other teams. Now, they are in prime position to compete for a State title.

“We’re going into the tournament feeling confident and ready to play our best competition we have ever played,” Caroline MacAusland, senior, said.

In their first playoff match up, West Linn faced Tualatin. Playing at home, the Lions defeated the Wolves 3-0. Next came a showdown with Lake Oswego. Both teams own a share of the TRL title and the Lakers were the last team to defeat the Lions. This time, though, the outcome was different. Again playing in front of West Linn faithful, the Lions toppled the Lakers 3-1. This win secured a spot in the State playoffs for the team.

Everything started to fall into place for the Lions at the end of the regular season. West Linn defeated Canby in their final league game that seemed to secure the team second place. However, an improbable loss by Lake Oswego on the same night, handed to them by fifth place Oregon City, changed what seemed definite. In the end, the Lions, the Lakers and the Cavaliers of Clackamas shared the TRL title.

“I am so proud of the team for being co-champions of league because I knew we were capable of it from the beginning,” MacAusland said.

The goal at the beginning of the season was to make it to the top eight, according to MacAusland. Now that they are there, they can only hope to build upon this goal. Their first game comes Friday for the Lions, when they face Central Catholic at Liberty High School at 8 AM.

“Whatever we end up as will be an achievement in itself because this experience may never come again for some of the girls and I am glad I get to end my volleyball career finishing in the top eight of state,” MacAusland said.