GOLDENDALE - The third time wasn't the charm for the Sunnyside Christian High School girls volleyball team.
Bickleton's Lady Pirates earned their third victory of the season, in as many attempts, against Sunnyside Christian at yesterday's 1B District tournament, being staged at Goldendale High School.
The three games to one win advances Bickleton to this coming Saturday's District semi-final match. The Lady Pirates (13-3) will go up against the Klickitat Vandals, who dealt Bickleton two of its three losses this season.
The SCHS Lady Knights (3-11) now face a loser-out match against Trout Lake/Glenwood at 10 a.m. this Saturday in the double-elimination tournament. Should Sunnyside Christian win that match, the team would have to win twice more on Saturday to secure the District's one and only berth to the 1A State tourney.
Yesterday, Bickleton closed out the Lady Knights in four games. The two previous victories this season over Sunnyside Christian were five-game affairs.
The Lady Pirates, despite being on-edge, won Wednesday's opener handily, 25-12. Bickleton forged a monstrous two-game advantage by taking the second game, 25-22.
"We played really uptight," said Bickleton Coach Kim Clinton. "Our first game was OK, but in the second game nerves set in," she said, adding that service errors by her team kept the Lady Knights too close for comfort.
Sunnyside Christian rallied in game three, taking the early lead enroute to cruising to a 25-21 win.
Bickleton fought back, however, in the fourth game to close the match out with an overtime 27-25 decision.
Interestingly, the Lady Pirates trailed for almost all of the fourth game before finally tying it at 24-all. Katelynn Clinton, the coach's daughter, went on to serve out the final two points of the match to give Bickleton the 27-25 victory.
"I think in the fourth game my girls said, 'we really want this,' and they just bore down and got it done," said the Bickleton coach.
"Hopefully, we got our jitters out of the way," Clinton added.
Individually for Bickleton yesterday, Clinton put 21-of-22 serves into play and came away with a match-best 17 kills and four blocks at the net. Teammates Morgan McBride and Dede Kibby combined for 23 assists against the Lady Knights.
Statistics from the Sunnyside Christian team were not made available before press deadline.