Power game

Freshman middle hitter Emily Darwin with a thunderous kill Thursday in the play-in match with Kingman Academy.

The rest of a new season begins Friday for the Benson Bobcats who meet Glendale Prep in the first round of the state volleyball championship.

The Bobcats, following last week’s thrilling 3-2 over Kingman Academy in the tournament play-in at home, drew the No. 12 seed and face No. 5 Glendale Prep Friday at 9 a.m. at Arcadia High School, 4703 E Indian School Rd. in Scottsdale.

Coach Kayla Harguess and crew will have upset on their minds as they prepare for the postseason encounter with the Griffins who enter play with a 26-6 overall record and an unbeaten 10-0 mark in section play. The Bobcats, meanwhile, enter the 16-team tournament with an 14-6 overall record and a 7-5 league record. But the Bobcats have shown flashes and can hit and play with the best of them. The ability to sustain that for a full match, however, has thus far eluded the Bobcats.

The key moving forward, said Harguess, is maintaining and throttling up the intensity as the match progresses.

“We need to work on keeping our energy up. That’s the most important thing, our energy falls and then we get down,” the coach said. “We just need to stay consistent and keep our energy level up for the whole match.”

Scottsdale Christian is the No. 1 seed. Friday’s action comprise the first and quarterfinal rounds with the semifinals and finals Saturday. The semifinals are at 11 a.m. and the championship game is set for 5 p.m. at North High School, 1101 E. Thomas Rd., Phoenix.

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