A hard fought win in the fifth set gave the Laramie Lady Plainsmen volleyball team their second consecutive regional volleyball title Saturday in Gillette.

No. 4 Laramie beat No. 2 Thunder Basin on their home floor 3-2. The Lady Plainsmen started strong with wins in the first two sets, 25-20 and 25-18. The Bolts rallied for sets three and four with both scores 25-20.

The fifth set was 15-9 in favor of Laramie that gave them the 4A East Regional Volleyball Championship.

Lady Plainsmen head coach Becky Baker said they had solid efforts throughout the weekend.

“To be honest, it’s probably the most consistent I’ve seen us play through a three-game stretch. We had some adversity that we stepped up to, which was just really cool to see for these kids.”

Freshman Alexis Stucky led the way with 15 kills, five blocks, and six digs. Jessica Crane added 12 kills, while Jennifer Aadland contributed 11 kills and 17 digs. Jacqueline Murdock had 18 assists and seven aces.

Baker knew it was a huge win on the Bolts’ home court.

“It was definitely a huge win. I mean, they had tons of fans there. We definitely had to dig within ourselves to pull that out, so to see them be able to do that, and when it comes down to a pressure, five-game situation, for them to come through and play so strong in that fifth set, it was really cool to see.”

Laramie qualified for the state volleyball tournament with two wins last Friday. They defeated Sheridan 3-1 in their first match. Scores were 25-21, 16-25, 25-19, and 25-15. Stucky had 21 kills and seven digs. Aadland added 13 kills, five blocks, and 17 digs. Halley Feezer also contributed 21 digs, while Kelsey Crane had 15 digs.

The Lady Plainsmen swept Campbell County 25-22, 25-20, and 25-19. Stucky finished with 11 kills, while Ashlyn Titensor had 10 kills.

Baker added, “The biggest thing I saw was just that mental strength piece. We really didn’t let anything rattle us, and physically, I’d say our defense really stepped it up a notch, which is something we need to maintain, and I think we really to change our focus. That weekend was great, and I want us to use that as momentum, but that’s done. It doesn’t help us on Thursday. We’ve gotta come this week and get better, and be ready to go.”

Laramie takes on Evanston in the first round of the 4A state tournament Thursday at 6 p.m.

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