Spanish Springs put the regular season to bed on Saturday afternoon with a 25-14, 26-24, 25-15 road sweep at Reed, spoiling the Raiders’ Senior Day.
It was the Cougs’ first time playing since suffering a tough five-set loss at McQueen last Thursday that ended their league-title hopes.
“We’ve moved on. We now who we’re playing in the playoffs,” Spanish Springs coach Frank Sandomenico said. “Hopefully we’ve learned some lessons. It was nice, we had five days off with the Fall Break and hopefully we’re mentally and physically fresh to make a playoff run.”
Both teams were locked into their playoffs seeds so Saturday’s outcome did not have an effect on positioning. The Cougars will take the High Desert League No. 2 seed to the postseason at 22-10, 12-4 in the DI North. The Raiders (5-19, 4-12) are the HDL No. 4.
After Spanish Springs rolled in the first set, Reed played arguably its best set of the season before falling 26-24.
“(That) is what I want to see,” Reed first-year coach James Crane said. “We definitely fought harder. That’s how we should play. That’s how we practice.”
The Cougars sprinted to a 10-2 lead in the third set before sending everyone home with a 25-15 victory.
Ireland Bennett, Sami Szchara and Emily Moore all co-led the Cougs with seven kills each. Mackenzie O’Connell passed out 29 assists to go along with four digs, three kills and a pair of aces.
For Reed, Makayla Linebarger turned in 12 digs and Maddy Johnson put down five kills.
The Cougars open the playoffs Tuesday night at home against Sierra League No. 3 Damonte Ranch (18-10, 12-4) at 6 p.m.
Spanish Springs was swept by the Mustangs early in the season, 28-26, 25-20, 26-24.
“We’re a whole different team than last time we played them,” Sandomenico said. “We moved girls around, different positions, different rotations. If both teams play well, it will be a great match … I expect them to play really well. I expect us to play really well. I’m looking forward to a good one.”
The Raiders are given the challenge of going to Sierra League champion Bishop Manogue. The Miners are 31-6, 15-1.
“We have to see if we can get in their heads, see if we can get them to make errors,” Crane said. “We need them to make errors.”
First serve on Tuesday is at 6 p.m.