The Northlake Christian School volleyball team overpowered Cohen in a Division IV first-round playoff Thursday afternoon in Covington.
The Wolverines, the division’s No. 11 seed, needed only 54 minutes to dispatch Cohen. The final score was 25-4, 25-9, 25-11.
Northlake Christian, which finished second in District 3-IV, advanced to play No. 6 seed Newman at 4:30 p.m. Monday in New Orleans.
The Wolverines’ record is now 18-12. Cohen, the champion in District 5-IV, ended its season 17-4.
The match was lopsided from the start. Northlake jumped out to a 9-0 lead and powered through the first game easily, behind a myriad of aces and Cohen unforced errors. The match was tied at 3 in the second game before Northlake got a run on serve by Maddi Chiota to pull ahead 12-3.
The Wolverines got sloppy in the middle of the second game, and allowed Cohen to close to 16-8. A series of aces closed the game, however, and gave Northlake a commanding two-set lead.
Cohen took its only lead of the match when it went ahead 4-3 in the third set when Da’Ja Simmons tipped a ball that creeped over the net for a winner. Northlake came back soundly, though, and put the match away.
Northlake coach Shannon Puder said her team has work to do if it plans to advance to the state tournament next week.
“We definitely need to clean up some of our passing,” Puder said. “But I think the offense has been really aggressive recently; blocking, attacking. We’ve had some great serves and our serve receive has been good. But (Newman) will definitely be a tough competitor. They always are.”
“I think keeping team unity is important right now,” Chiota said. “We have to be consistent. I also think that we have to keep our confidence high and be enthusiastic about (the chance to play in a regional playoff).”
Cohen coach Lakenya Reed said she was proud of her team’s effort against Northlake. Reed said her goal was for the team to score at least 10 points in each set.
“We fell short of the goal, but they played well and they played together,” Reed said of her squad.
Northlake was led by Chiota, who had 12 aces, five digs and seven kills. Alaina Hardy had 10 digs, seven aces, and five kills. Lexie White had 14 aces, 10 digs and seven kills; and Maddy Royer added 12 aces, 14 digs, and nine kills to lead Northlake.