116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS — The state volleyball tournament experience has not been a great one over the past couple of years for North Scott.
Coach Taryn VanEarwage's team was bounced in the first round in 2019 and 2020.
On top of that, the Lancers' top offensive threat, Ella McLaughlin, has had her own share of misfortune.
She missed last year's tournament due to COVID-19 and it looked like a right-hand injury, suffered in practice leading up to this year's tournament, might have her out again.
In what was called a “game-time decision” by VanEarwage, McLaughlin not only took the court for the Lancers' Class 4A quarterfinal against Bondurant-Farrar with her hand heavily wrapped, she didn't miss a beat.
The 5-foot-11 senior had a team-high 10 kills as No. 2 North Scott rolled to a 25-21, 25-16, 25-20 win.
» Photo gallery: North Scott vs. Bondurant-Farrar in state volleyball tournament
The No. 2 Lancers (31-4) advance to a noon semifinal on Wednesday. Bondurant-Farrar ends its season at 32-8.
McLaughlin said there was “no way” she wasn't going to take the court.
“Our trainer did a really good job taping it up for me,” McLaughlin said. “I missed last year due to quarantine so I was very determined to be here no matter what.
“I was really scared (when the injury occurred) that I wasn't going to be able to play. Once I got out there, the adrenaline was pumping and I was ready to go.”
Once the decision was made to let McLaughlin play, VanEarwage said she expected the senior to make all the plays.
“She stepped up like she usually does,” said the third-year North Scott coach. “I can't say more about her.”
Teammate Grace Graham, who added seven kills, said it was a huge lift having McLaughlin on the court.
“We did have to change up some of the rotations, but we were super-blessed to have her on the court with us.”
Bondurant-Farrar did make a charge in Game 3 to take a 17-15 lead, but a 7-0 Lancer run ended any hopes for a Blue Jay comeback.
“We did a good job of keeping our momentum up,” Graham said. “When they got ahead, we stayed focused and were able to come back.”
Hallie Bedler had 13 kills to lead the Blue Jay offense.