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College Volleyball: Ridgewater a step from nationals

ST. CLOUD — The Ridgewater volleyball team came out firing and took down Rochester 3-1 in the Region 13A semifinals on Friday at the Whitney Center.

The Warriors won 27-25, 25-18, 19-25 and 25-18.

The advanced to play host St. Cloud Technical for the region championship and a spot in the NJCAA Division III national tournament at noon today at Whitney Center.

St. Cloud Technical defeated Minnesota State-Fergus Falls 25-17, 25-23 and 25-17 in the other 13A semifinals match on Friday at Whitney.

St. Cloud Technical (23-6) and Ridgewater (22-8) split two regular-season MCAC matches this season. The teams tied for first in the Southern Division but SCT got the top seed by tiebreaker.

The Warriors had to come back to win the first set. They were down 23-18 but a Kiana Johnson serving run and solid defense helped them pull out the win, said Ridgewater head coach Joe Sussenguth.

Ridgewater rallied from the third-set loss to take an early lead in the fourth and ran out the match.

The win was sweet since a 3-0 loss at Rochester last weekend cost Ridgewater the region's No. 1 seed and a chance to host the playoffs.

"After getting swept last Saturday at Rochester, we wanted to have a unified effort, which we did," Sussenguth said.

No stats from the match were available at press time. See Monday's Tribune for more on the championship match and the semifinals.

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