Dominican sweeps Lady Griffins in first round

Peter Silas Pasqua
Dutchtown’s Chelsea Magee sends a shot over against Episcopal earlier in the season. Dutchtown was eliminated from the Division I Playoffs by Dominican Monday night.

NEW ORLEANS - Dominican swept Dutchtown 25-9, 25-11, 25-14 in a Division I bi-district playoff at St. Mary’s Dominican High School’s Pitt Monday evening.

“They are definitely a great team with a rich tradition and a good coach,” Dutchtown head coach Patrick Ricks said. “We went into the match thinking we had nothing to lose. If we played our best and won that would be great, but if we played our best and lost, at least we played our best.”

No. 2 seeded Dominican (34-6) under head coach Jessica Chatellier advanced to the Louisiana High School Athletic Association’s State Volleyball Tournament at the Ponchartrain Center in Kenner to face No. 15 Archbishop Chapelle (19-16), who defeated No. 18 Lafayette 3-2, in the regionals Wednesday night.

“They were just a real solid team,” Ricks said. “They served extremely well and we just didn’t do a good job of defending their serve. When we did return their serve they blocked it. They had an answer for everything we tried to do.”

No. 31 seed Dutchtown finishes the season with a record of 11-20 after placing third in Divison 4-I with a 5-5 record

“This year we struggled a whole lot with consistency,” Ricks said. “At times, we played really well and at other times we didn’t. That is something that we have to focus on going into next season. Not getting too far up or getting too far down.”

The Lady Griffins will lose four key seniors to graduation in outside hitter Chelsea Magee, middle blocker Rachael Pickens and defensive specialists Caitlin O’Banion and Shamarea Jones. 

“It is definitely going to be hard to replace the seniors,” Ricks said. “Chelsea was our go to girl on the outside whenever we needed a kill. Caitlyn and Shamarea  took care of the back row and were excellent passers and Racheal did a great job in the middle so we are going to have a hard time replacing them.

Key players that will return for Dutchtown include setter Haley Bain, libero Justine Tureau, middle blockers Haley Burns and Danielle Lightfoot, all juniors and sophomore outside hitter Brooke Bahlinger.

“We have five girls coming back who will help us and with the experience they gained this year they will become better players,” Ricks said.

“I am hoping depending on what district we end up in, that we can contend for a district championship and return to the playoffs. Our goal is to be in the top 20 in seeding next year and make the tournament. That is our main goal and I think we can do it. The girls are committed to playing club ball and doing what it takes to get better in the offseason.”