For the past five weeks, Bishop Blanchet, Eastside Catholic, and Seattle Prep have all been in the the top four of the state's volleyball rankings. It is weird to see three catholic schools from the same division above the rest of the state. Kennedy Catholic also might be making a run at the top five, they came in at No. 6 in the latest rankings.
It would not surprise me to see all three of these teams make it through districts and eventually the state tournament. Each team has enough firepower and enough experience to make a run at the state championship.
Bishop Blanchet finished third in state last year, and lost a significant amount of seniors to graduation, but still have what some rivals have dubbed, "the Beloved Daughter", Summer Nash. The rumor going around is that Nash will be playing for the University of San Diego next season. The number one ranked Blanchet Braves have beaten the fourth ranked Seattle Prep Panthers twice and have beat the number two ranked Eastside Catholic Crusaders once.
They have one remaining match at Eastside Catholic this Wednesday. If they can beat Eastside again, they will be the unquestionable favorite entering the playoffs. They have yet to lose, and it does not look like they are slowing down. It is nice to see that Blanchet is having some sort of athletic success this season, their other fall sports teams have been terrible----Blanchet's football team hit rock bottom by losing against Lakeside two weeks ago.
But let me stop bashing Blanchet.
How does Eastside Catholic look moving forward this season? The Crusaders only have the one loss to Blanchet, and otherwise remain perfect throughout league play so far. They won a close match against Seattle Prep last week, and they will get another chance at Prep at the end of the season.
The Crusaders are led by the Georgetown-bound Brooke Bachesta. The 6' 1" senior has lived up to all the hype and will be crucial heading into the playoffs.
As for Seattle Prep, they have lost against Blanchet twice and have dropped a match against Eastside Catholic. They have one more significant match against Eastside Catholic. The Panthers are loaded with as much talent as Eastside and Blanchet; seniors Lani Beadle, Emily Kuijper, Sam Houston, Marit Pinkoske, and Rae Ann Hastings all are leading this team. On top of that, Olivia Magill and Gabby Bird-Vogel are two non-Seniors that are making an impact for the the Panthers.
Some may point to this team and see that they have not been able to step up to the pressure of the big games. But each game has been close, they have not been easily run over by Blanchet and Eastside. This team has the potential to beat both of those teams, it is just a matter of heating up at the right time.
It will be interesting to see how things turn out for these three teams. All of them have been at the top, and it's only going to get more interesting once the playoffs start. Each team is loaded with college talent, the players from each team know each other pretty well, and there is an embedded rivalry between all the schools.
This is as good as it gets folks, go watch some volleyball.