Deer Lakes volleyball looks forward to WPIAL quarterfinals
By: Michael Love
Monday, May 14, 2018 | 10:54 PM
Deer Lakes boys volleyball earned the No. 3 seed for the WPIAL Class AA playoffs and received a bye into the quarterfinals as the brackets were released Monday.
The Lancers, co-champions of Section 2 with Derry at 9-1, begin tournament play at 6 p.m. Thursday at Ambridge and will take on the winner of a first-round contest between No. 6 Beaver County Christian and No. 11 Thomas Jefferson.
The Eagles and Jaguars will play at 6 p.m. Tuesday at Montour High School.
Derry earned the No. 1 seed. It defeated Ambridge in a nonsection clash last week.
The Bridgers were the season-long No. 1 team in the Western Pennsylvania Volleyball Coaches Association Class AA rankings. They check in as the playoffs' No. 2 seed.
“Seeing that Derry beat Ambridge, we figured that's where we would fall,” Deer Lakes coach Brady Schuller said. “It's a tough route to the finals with Ambridge and Beaver County Christian on our side of the bracket. We're definitely focused only on Thursday. We're only guaranteed that first game. We need to come out and practice hard the next two days and then play well on Thursday.”
The rest of the first-round matchups slated for Tuesday have No. 8 Trinity taking on No. 9 Bishop Canevin at North Allegheny, No. 4 Montour hosting No. 13 Mars, No. 5 Seton LaSalle hosting No. 12 Obama and No. 7 Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic facing No. 10 Keystone Oaks at Seneca Valley.
In addition to its goal of a WPIAL championship, Deer Lakes wants to be one of the three teams from the WPIAL to qualify for the PIAA tournament. The semifinals are set for May 22 at sites and times to be determined, and the championship match will be May 24 at Baldwin.
Last year, the Lancers advanced past the first round of states for the first time since they won the state title in 2011.
Deer Lakes, last year's WPIAL runner-up in Class AA, defeated District 6 champion Forest Hills in the first round of states before losing to District 10 champ Cochranton in the quarterfinals.
North Allegheny earned the No. 1 seed in Class AAA, followed by Bethel Park, Penn-Trafford and Butler.
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