Young Arcata Tigers clinch another Big 5 title

Submitted photo – The Tigers celebrate their championship on Tuesday night.

By Ray Hamill — The Arcata Tigers continue to set the standard in Big 5 volleyball.

On Tuesday night, a young team that features just one senior got the better of Del Norte in four sets to clinch another league title.

The Tigers won the Big 5 in 2019 and also had the best team on the North Coast once again last season, when a league title was not awarded because of the shortened pandemic campaign.

And now, this year’s team has kept that impressive run going in what was a competitive and wide open conference.

The Tigers won Tuesday’s match 25-13, 25-16, 23-25, 25-16.

Senior Abby Costello-Anderson was honored before the match, and the team leader followed that with another big performance, finishing with 10 kills.

“As the only senior on the team, the girls looked to her for leadership,” head coach Laurie Griffith said of Costello-Anderson. “She was a major part of our offense and we will miss her next year.”

She wasn’t the only hero on the night for the Tigers, who had to withstand a Del Norte rally in the third set to pull out the victory in four.

Click here for a gallery of photos from Tuesday’s big game …

Ray Hamill/ – Abby Costello-Anderson

Sydney Hasselquist had her best match yet as she continues to play a pivotal role for the team and finished with 11 kills, while Nora Talty dished out 34 assists and served two aces.

Olivia Railsback also had a good night in the win, finishing with six kills and three aces, while Caroline Dieker had six kills and two blocks.

Lily Rust-Kelley added 10 digs and four aces, while Lila Wolf had eight digs and Taylor Appy three aces and four digs.

The win will give the Tigers a home North Coast Section playoff game next week.

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