GRAND ISLAND-It took St. Pat's a while to get going on Thursday, but the Lady Irish beat Hershey in four sets at Northwest High School to advance to the Class C2 semifinals at the Nebraska State Volleyball Tournament.
After beating the rival Panthers 23-25, 25-22, 25-17, 25-10 in the first round, St. Pat's will play Norfolk Lutheran Northeast at 9 am on Friday at Grand Island Senior High School.
Hershey finishes with a record of 17-11.
The Panthers surprised the Irish (29-1) by winning the last two plays of the first set to go up 1-0.
Both teams played even for most of the second set, but St. Pat's broke out to an 18-14 with a long run served by Brittany Lawrence before evening the match up, shortly thereafter.
From there, the sets got more one-sided in favor of the top-seeded Lady Irish. St. Pat's broke out to an 11-4 lead in the third and then it dominated from beginning to end in the fourth.
The Irish scored the first seven points to start what ended up being the final set of the match. St. Pat's led as much as 16-3 before putting Hershey away.
Lawrence led the Lady Irish with a game-high 21 kills. The 6-foot-3 junior also served for 10 points.
For the Lady Panthers, Maddie Seamann had 13 kills and Brooke Frederick followed with 12.