CHAPPELL-North Platte St. Pat's swept Bridgeport on Friday to win the district championship for the second straight year at the Creek Valley Thunderdome.The Irish beat Bridgeport 25-17, 25-15 25-12 to clinch their third state tournament berth in four years.
St. Pat's (29-1) got out to an 8-2 lead in the first set and led as much as 18-9. Bridgeport (11-20) went on a run and cut the lead to 18-13 but that was the closest the Bulldogs got before the Lady Irish put it away.
Bridgeport surprised the Irish by earning a 7-4 lead in the second set. But it wasn't long before St. Pat's took the lead at 12-10 after Bree Saner made kills on back to back plays.
The Lady Irish went on a 5-0 run with Brook Boucher serving to take a commanding 19-11 lead.
In the third set, St. Pat's dominated from the first serve on, leading 7-1 after Saner served for five straight. The Irish cruised after that to win the C2-6 championship.
Samantha Byrn and Brittany Lawrence led the Lady Irish with 12 and 11 kills, respectively.
St. Pat's should be one of the top two seeds at the Nebraska State Tournament, which starts on Thursday in Grand Island. The Irish are battling with Hastings St. Cecilia, who knocked St. Pat's out in the first round of state last year, for the top seed. Seeding for the state tournament is determined by the NSAA's power point rankings.