The Newman Comets moved to within one win of their first regional title since 2009, beating Marquette 25-13, 23-25, 25-22 on Tuesday in the semifinals of the Class 2A Amboy Regional.
The Comets (22-11) trailed 22-19 in the third set, but a sideout put Aubree Schmitt back at the service line. The sophomore proceeded to serve out the final five points to clinch the match.
Kayci Howell led the charge for Newman, dishing 11 assists, spiking seven kills and serving for 15 points. Schmitt added eight points and five kills, and Rachel Hageman had five kills and five blocks. Allison Shipman finished with nine assists, seven points and three aces, and Sara Nysather led the back-row defense with five digs.
The Comets will face Seneca in Thursday’s championship, starting at 6 p.m. Seneca defeated Somonauk 25-18, 25-21 in Tuesday’s other semifinal.
2A Fulton Regional
Fulton def. Morrison 26-24, 25-22: Chelsea Lesniewski ripped nine kills and stuffed a block, Rachael Beiermann had eight assists, four digs, three kills and an ace, and the Steamers won a regional semifinal match on their home court.
Kylie Kennedy added four digs, three kills and three aces for Fulton (16-17-1), while Olivia Edfors dished 11 assists and Katherine Wayne recorded 10 digs and two aces.
Adrienne Banks and Alyssa Workman led Morrison (15-16) with six kills each, with Banks stuffing four blocks and Workman adding three blocks and two aces. Allie Renkes ripped five kills, Jessica Wade set eight assists, and Jade Koch chipped in 10 digs.
The Steamers advance to Thursday’s championship match, where they will take on Three Rivers champ Riverdale, a 25-11, 25-7 winner over Alleman in the other semifinal.
2A Christian Life Regional
Oregon def. Byron 25-19, 19-25, 25-21: The Hawks advanced to the regional championship match with a three-set victory over the rival Tigers in Rockford.
Third-seeded Oregon will take on top-seeded Rockford Lutheran at 6 p.m. Thursday. Lutheran defeated Rockford Christian 25-18, 25-18 in the other semifinal.
2A Orion Regional
Orion def. Bureau Valley 25-19, 25-20: Lindsey Hoffert had eight kills and Heaven Bennett added six more, but the Storm’s season ended in the regional semifinals at Orion.
Sydney Lebahn dished 17 assists and served for nine points for BV (11-19-2), while Danae Ross had seven digs. Brandi DeWaele chipped in five digs and four points.
1A Erie Regional
Erie def. AFC 25-11, 25-14: Peyton Rus ripped nine kills and Courtney Cobert had 11 digs to lead the Cardinals past the Raiders in a regional semifinal.
Savannah Mettler spiked five kills for Erie, while Paige Rus and Rachel Cobert each stuffed a pair of blocks. Katelyn Temple had 12 assists and Deanna Black chipped in 11 more.
Lexie Fore had four kills and Cassidy Koning three for AFC, and Sarah Matson stuffed two blocks. Lea Koning dished 11 assists and Kayla Colwell had seven digs.
Eastland def. Milledgeville 25-19, 22-25, 25-7: In the other semifinal, the Cougars were able to fend off the Missiles. Eastland and Erie will square off at 7 p.m. Thursday for the regional crown.
Sauk Valley def. Waubonsee 25-12, 26-24, 25-16: Karly Koch set 27 assists, Nicole Shaffer had 17 digs, and the Skyhawks won their home finale in straight sets.
Kalli Scheppers (9 kills) and Jessica Bonnell (8 kills) paced the offense, while Kayla Kurz stuffed the stat sheet with five kills, 6 stuff blocks and 2 block assists. Sauk (24-12) closes out its regular season with a triangular meet Saturday in Lincoln.
Kayci Howell, Newman, 15 points, 11 assists, 7 kills
Chelsea Lesniewski, Fulton, 9 kills, 1 block
Peyton Rus, Erie, 9 kills
Kalli Scheppers, Sauk, 9 kills
Lindsey Hoffert, BV, 8 kills
Jessica Bonnell, Sauk, 8 kills