Oct 19, 2012 - By Randy Tucker, Sports WriterLANDER -- A sluggish start by Class 2-A Southwest volleyball champion Shoshoni gave the Greybull Buffs brief hope, but the Wranglers put the game away with a solid performance in the third game to advance to a 4:30 p.m. semifinal with the Lovell Bulldogs at the 2-A West regional at Lander Valley High School.
The opening game featured four ties and six lead changes before Shoshoni rallied late to take the game 25-20.
Holding a scant 19-17, lead the Wranglers rallied behind a Natalee Goff ace and a double block by Sarah Thompson and Shaide Pingetzer to build a 21-17 advantage. Shoshoni couldn't put the game away and drove two serves into the next to keep it close before Kolbi Pickinpaugh drilled back-to-back kills to win the game.
Shoshoni continued to struggle in the second, trading point for point throughout the game before emerging with a 25-22 win.
In the final game the Wranglers played the part of the top-ranked team in Class 2-A, dominating the Buffs from start to finish.
In the opening pair of games Greybull blocked Shoshoni's front wall, negating the Wranglers significant height advantage.
Tied 6-6 early in the match the Wranglers put the hammer down with 14-2 run that blew open the game.
Erika Eckley scored on seven straight serves to open the run before Kaylee Fegler took over with a pair of aces en route to five straight serves of her own.
Leading 21-9 the Wranglers hammered the ball behind hard hits from Natalee Goff and Thompson to cruise to the win.
Shoshoni's lone non-senior, Annika Dechert, played a quiet but very effective game in serving and returning serve for the Wranglers.
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