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Lady Rams knocked out of state tournament

Staff report

RIO RANCHO — Portales’ underdog bid to reach the Class 4A state volleyball finals came up just short on Friday night.

The Lady Rams pulled up a five-set quarterfinal win over West Las Vegas 25-18, 20-25, 26-24, 19-25, 15-13 on Friday morning, then erased a two-set deficit before falling to Sandia Prep 28-26, 25-11, 22-25, 21-25, 15-6 in the evening semifinals.

Sandia Prep (19-6) will face the Lady Rams’ District 4-4A rival, Ruidoso (20-5), in today’s 11 a.m. championship match at Santa Ana Star Center.

Veteran PHS coach Ruth Chavez was hardly disappointed with her team’s performance of nearly making the state final before bowing out with a 10-15 record.

“I just felt like our kids did a real good job,” said Chavez, whose squad was seeded eighth in the 12-team field coming in. “We had a young team, but they really battled.”

Juniors Sheraya Cox and Kambrey Blakey had 13 and 10 kills respectively for PHS against Sandia Prep.

“Our kids came to play,” Chavez said. “They were well-prepared and played hard.”