Naselle was beaten by Firm Foundation in the consolation bracket semifinal to end the Comets’ hunt for another 7th and 8th-place trophy.

The Friday morning loss brings to an end a season which saw coach Rebekah Wirkkala’s squad take second at Districts to advance to state. At Yakima, the Comets fell to powerful Pomeroy then defeated Grace Academy before meeting the Battle Ground team.

Scores were 15-25, 22-25, 25-21 and 21-25.

Naselle came out fired up and roared to a 12-5 lead in the first set, but then 6-0 opponent Katie Kogler started to show her dominance.

Firm Foundation won the first set and the second and looked like they would cruise in the third until Naselle’s Kaylin Shrives and Jackie Steenerson had some spectacular kills, some good net work by Hollie Haataia and a kill by Kylee Tarabochia gave Naselle the set.

The players sprinted to the other side of the court to start the next period, but despite some long rallies and some clever tip-overs by Steenerson, Firm Foundation’s Kogler and Elsa Helmes hit impossible-to return shots to seal the victory.

Afterward, Coach Wirkkala praised her team. “We were both fighting and we had a few errors. It’s whoever is consistent who does well at state. We fought really hard. Jackie had some great hits and Delaney (Kragerud) did well in the last two games.

“I am very proud of the way they have faced adversity this season with injury and illness.”

During the tournament, three Comets were honored for sportsmanship.

They were Echo Cenci, Bella Colombo and Hollie Haataia.

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