YORK — Ranked eighth and 20th in the state, respectively, Maplewood and Titusville had already proven to at least a few people that they were among the best girls volleyball teams in Pennsylvania.

On Friday, they proved it to a few more.

The Tigers and Rockets each finished the quarterfinal round of pool play at 3-0, earning them the No. 1 seeds in today’s semifinals. The efforts also kept the possibility of an all-Crawford County final alive, something that has never been done before.

Maplewood will play Delone Catholic and Titusville will face Huntingdon for that opportunity. The semis are set for 9:40 a.m. back at Central York High School.

“That just shows you how good volleyball is in our area,” Titusville coach Debbie Carr said. “These girls all play (Junior Olympics) together in the spring. It’s just great.”

Especially with both team’s accomplishments coming despite playing sub-par.

In fact, Maplewood began the day with a 25-22 loss to Huntingdon after leading the contest 7-1. For the Rockets, it was a 29-27 loss to WPIAL third seed South Park. Titusville was within two points of winning the game when the Bearcats rallied to tie it at 24.

Maplewood and Titusville responded by winning the next two games and the match, and then won their remaining 13 games to close out the day. Still, Maplewood coach Sheila Bancroft and Titusville coach Debbie Carr think the best is yet to come.

“We had a good day,” Bancroft said. “It wasn’t the best Maplewood ball at times. We played to get by.”

Maplewood won the Huntingdon match, 22-25, 25-17, 25-12. In the next round, the Tigers earned the sweep, beating Merion Mercy Academy, the 2001 state champions, 25-16, 25-21, 25-20. The District 10 champions finished the day off with a 25-13, 25-23, 26-24 win over Schuykill Valley.

Maplewood trailed in its final game against the Panthers 24-19, but got a series of huge plays from sophomore middle hitter Danielle Brunot to keep the winning streak alive.

“We were off at times,” Bancroft said. “I think in the (Merion Mercy) match that we played, that after we won the first two games it was like, ‘We already beat you twice.’ But I told them it was very important they won that one.

“It got a little sloppy. But we come back (today).”

Titusville also had its series of miscues in the quarterfinals. The round began with a 27-29, 25-16, 25-13 win over South Park followed by a 25-17, 25-21, 25-14 win over Bethlehem Catholic that assured the Rockets a spot in the semifinals. Titusville clinched the top seed with a 25-19, 25-23 win over Delone Catholic.

The teams did not play the final game with both teams already assured a spot in the semifinals and no tiebreakers needed.

The Rockets had 12 service errors against South Park and another eight against Bethlehem Catholic.

“When you come down to states, you can’t do that and expect to win. Other people had to step up and really play,” Carr said. “But when our serving game was down, our hitting and blocking game picked up. So it was nice when one part of our game was faltering another picked it up.”

Today, the Rockets are looking for their first trip to the state championship match. The Tigers, meanwhile, are looking for their fourth state title. They won titles in 1985, ‘92 and ‘95. They’ve been the state runner-up twice.

“I think both of our goals, once again, coming in here was to avoid each other until the finals,” Bancroft said. “We did our part. We both have very good semifinal matches. It’s a whole new ball game (today). We did what we came here to do so far. We just need to continue.”

“Right now I do think we are the two best teams unless someone gets upset,” she added.

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