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Thursday May 26th, 2016 2:35PM

Volleyball: Four area teams battling for playoff spots

By staff
Buford, East Hall, North Hall and West Hall will each battle for a playoff spot in the Area 5-AAA tournament on Thursday after competing through first round matches on Tuesday.

Buford and North Hall each won first round matches before falling to top seeds Blessed Trinity and St. Pius X. Meanwhile, East Hall and West Hall bounced back from early defeats to play their way into postseason contention with second match victories.

Buford will take on West Hall at 5 p.m. Thursday at North Hall, while the host Lady Trojans will play East Hall at 5 p.m. The winners of each match will qualify for the state playoffs and face off at 6 p.m. Thursday for third place in 5-AAA. St. Pius will play Blessed Trinity for the area championship at 6 p.m. Thursday, also at North Hall.

The Lady Trojans took out West Hall in its opening match on Tuesday, 25-14 and 25-10 before falling to No. 1 seed St. Pius 25-16, 25-18.

Kristina Gregory had 16 assists, three aces, four kills and three digs to pace North Hall, while Sydney Cleveland had 12 kills, seven digs and one ace. Julie Daniels also had six kills and seven digs; Makenzie Bryant had 10 digs and an ace; Jen Mullican had two kills and two blocks; Juliana Paschall had two aces and a block; and Andi Fleming had four digs and an ace.

Meanwhile on Tuesday East Hall (29-18) bounced back from an opening round loss to Buford -- 25-12, 25-16 -- to defeat Decatur in 3 sets 22-25, 25-17, 25-17 and stay alive in tournament play.

Tarryn Long had 14 points on serve with three aces, 16 kills, four blocks and 11 digs to pace the Lady Vikings, while Kara Hix added nine points on serve with two aces, six kills and 40 digs -- setting a new state record for career digs with her performance tonight.

East Hall's Ashleigh Burnett also scored eight points on serve with one ace, three kills, two assists and 12 digs; Emily Roberts had seven kills, four digs and two blocks; Allyson Segars had one point on serve with five kills, two blocks and five digs; Savannah Lindsey had 20 points scored on serve, two aces, one kill and 10 digs; Cassida Shockley had five points on serve one kill, nine digs and 29 assists.
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