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Lady Cardinals fight way to third straight state finals

The Lady Cardinals had dominated Southside Christian in the two regular season matchups after playing down to the wire in four straight matches last season.
The match on Wednesday night was reminiscent of the wars waged last season.
It took the Lady Cardinals five games before finishing the Lady Sabres 15-13.
The Lady Sabres came out fired up playing back and forth with the No. 1 Lady Cardinals in the first game. Landrum seemed to get some breathing room after a Caroline Cann ace put them up 20-17. But the Lady Sabres roared back and tied the game up 24-24. Southside took the lead 25-24, but the momentum came storming back to Landrum via the arm of Cann.
Cann, foreshadowing what was to come, sent three kills into the heart of the Lady Sabre defense to give Landrum a 27-25 win.
In the second game, Southside came out strong. The Lady Sabres jumped out to a 7-1 lead. But a veteran Landrum team wasnt going to sit back on its heels for long. Landrum scored eight straight points to take a 9-7 lead.
And then the back-and-forth play continued as the two teams played an ultimate game of tug-of-war. Up 22-18, Cann served three straight aces to finish off the second game.
Southside Christian, however, wasnt finished. The Lady Sabres fought back and won the next two games 25-13 and 25-22.
In the final game, the two teams tied each other six times. But as in the other two game victories, the Lady Cardinals relied on Cann. Out of the last four points, Cann had three kills for Landrum.
We knew they wouldnt go away, Cann said.
But the junior put the Lady Cardinals on her back Wednesday night and marched on to the state finals. The Lady Cardinals will either play Johnsonville for the third straight year or Academic Magnet Saturday at White Knoll High School in Columbia at 11 a.m..
I think this (game) helped prepare the girls for state, Landrum head coach Denise Riske said.