Gerry Steele
The Baker City Herald

Baker advanced to the first round of the Class 4A state volleyball playoffs Saturday with a 25-7, 25-8, 25-11 victory over La Pine on the Baker floor.

The win sends the Bulldogs (12-10) to Sisters Saturday afternoon. The winner of that match advances to the 4A quarterfinals Nov. 11 at Lane Community College at Eugene.

La Pine entered Saturday's match with an 0-17 record. The Hawks hadn't won a set all season, and that pattern remained against Baker.

"The thought the girls did a nice job of staying on top of the free ball," said Baker coach Michele McCauley.

"I though t my setters did a great job of distributing the ball across the net. We set a lot to the middle, but during crunch time we spread it around a little bit more."

Setters D.J. McCauley and Michelle Birkmaier combined to go 55-of-57 setting with 19 assists.

In the first game, McCauley served Baker on top 9-0.

Then, behind the serving of Ashley McConniel and Stacy Duman and the net play of Duman, Birkmaier and Monica Voboril, the Bulldogs increased their lead to 19-4.

Voboril then added three more kills as Baker won the first game 25-7.Baker led just 2-1 in Game 2 before Ashley Trees came off the bench to serve the Bulldogs into a 10-1 lead. Trees served one ace, Voboril added two scoring hits, and Birkmaier one.

Later, leading 13-6, Kathryn Daugherty came off the bench to serve the Bulldogs to a 20-6 cushion. She had one ace and Duman had two scoring hits.

Emily Smith served the final four points for the win.

Game 3 was the most competitive of the day. The teams battled to a 6-6 draw before Birkmaier served Baker on top for good at 9-6.

Daugherty and Smith each served four points to boost Baker's lead to 19-8. McConniel later served the final two points for the match win.

McCauley finished 14-of-15 serving and 13-of-16 hitting with three kills. Smith was 10-for-10 digging, and Trees 9-for-9 serving.

Daugherty was 14-for-14 serving. Voboril had 16 kills ad Duman seven. Birkmaier was 10-for-13 hitting with two kills.

Abi Smith was 6-of-8 hitting with a kill, Taylor McAdams 3-of-4 hitting with a kill, and McConniel 8-for-8 serving with eight digs.

Spectator admission at Sisters will be $6 adults and $4 students.

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