ST. PETERSBURG — Trailing 23-20 in the fourth game of Wednesday's Class 3A, District 10 semifinal match, Clearwater Central Catholic was on the verge of going to a fifth and deciding game against Tampa Catholic.
Then the Marauders scored a point. Then another.
After coming up short in close games throughout the season, CCC came through when it mattered most, scoring seven of the final points to win the fourth game and the match 18-25, 25-9, 25-18, 27-25.
"We've been struggling to find ways to close out tough games," Marauders coach Andrew Wilson said. "We started getting some confidence late in the year, though, and finding that edge."
CCC dropped the first game, committing seven errors in the first nine points. After that, the Marauders played mostly mistake-free to win the final three and exact revenge against the Crusaders (4-8), who swept the regular-meeting between the schools.
Mary Michael Toups had 24 kills and Vanessa Annoni had 44 assists to lead CCC.
Berkeley Prep swept host St. Petersburg Catholic 25-16, 25-13, 25-15 in the other semifinal.
"We were a little tight early on and made it a little interesting," Berkeley Prep coach Randy Dagostino said. "But overall we played well."
MacKenzie Dagostino and Jordan Burgess each had eight kills and Ginny Willis had 18 assists and 14 service points for the Buccaneers (23-3).
The Barons finished their season at 15-7.