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District volleyball preview

Countryside goes undefeated. East Lake nabs first place in the county's toughest district by beating Palm Harbor University and Clearwater when it counted in October. Northside doesn't skip a beat without Kayla Walton. And don't look now, but Lakewood has emerged as a team worthy of our preseason No. 2 selection.

Class 6A, District 7 at Gaither

Seeds: 1. Countryside 2. Mitchell 3. Sickles 4. St. Petersburg 5. Gaither 6. Alonso

Defending champ: Sickles; runnerup: Countryside

Schedule: Tuesday — Sickles vs. Alonso, 6; St. Petersburg vs. Gaither, 8. Wednesday — Sickles-Alonso winner vs. Mitchell, TBA; St. Petersburg-Gaither winner vs. Countryside, TBA. Thursday — Final, 7

Skinny Players to watch
Heavily favored Countryside defeated each district foe twice without losing a game. St. Petersburg draws the assignment of playing it in the semifinals should it beat Gaither. Countryside: Madison Truluck St. Petersburg: Marissa Hamilton
Class 5A, District 9 at Palm Harbor University

Seeds: 1. East Lake 2. PHU 3. Clearwater 4. Tarpon Springs 5. Dunedin 6. Largo 7. Pinellas Park

Defending champ: Clearwater; runnerup: East Lake

Schedule: Today Tarpon vs. Dunedin, 4:30; PHU vs. Pinellas Park, 6; Clearwater vs. Largo, 7:30. Tuesday — East Lake vs. Tarpon-Dunedin winner, 6; PHU-Pinellas Park winner vs. Clearwater-Largo winner, 7:30. Thursday — Final, 7.

Skinny Players to watch
East Lake earned a first-round bye and avoided a meeting with PHU or Clearwater in the semifinals. The Eagles split with both teams. PHU and Clearwater likely will play in the semis with a berth to regions on the line. PHU won both regular-season meetings. Clearwater: J'Beria Davis East Lake: Brittnay Estes PHU: Cassie Wilkinson
Class 5A, District 11 at Lakewood

Seeds: 1. Lakewood 2. Northeast 3. Seminole 4. Osceola 5. Boca Ciega 6. Dixie Hollins 7. Gibbs

Defending champ: Lakewood; runnerup: Seminole

Schedule: Today — Northeast vs. Gibbs, 7. Tuesday — Osceola vs. Boca Ciega, 6; Seminole vs. Dixie, 7:30. Wednesday — Northeast-Gibbs winner vs. Seminole-Dixie winner, 6; Osceola-Boca Ciega winner vs. Lakewood, 7:30. Thursday — Final, 7.

Skinny Players to watch
Steadily improving Lakewood rolled through the district undefeated. This should be no different. Most likely, Northeast and Seminole meet in the semifinals. The Vikings won in four earlier this season. Lakewood: Berkley Whaley Northeast: Erin Hughes Seminole: Marissa Lisenbee
Class 3A, District 11 at Berkeley Prep

Seeds: 1. Berkeley Prep 2. Academy of the Holy Names 3. Clearwater Central Catholic 4. Tampa Catholic 5. St. Petersburg Catholic 6. Lennard

Defending champ: Berkeley; runnerup: Academy

Schedule: Tuesday — CCC vs. Lennard, 5:30; Tampa Catholic vs. SPC, 7:30. Wednesday — Tampa Catholic-SPC winner vs. AHN, 5:30; CCC-Lennard winner vs. Berkeley, 7:30. Thursday — Final, 7.

Skinny Players to watch
Berkeley has advanced to the state semifinals the past three seasons. A fourth is a strong possibility. CCC would have to upset the Buccaneers in the semifinals to advance beyond districts, which could be too tall of an order. SPC is in a better position to advance. If the Barons get by Tampa Catholic, AHN awaits. The Barons lost in five to it during the regular season. CCC: Mary Michael Toups SPC: Molly Smith
Class 2A, District 9 at Tampa Prep

Seeds: 1. Tampa Prep 2. Indian Rocks Christian 3. Calvary Christian 4. Bishop McLaughlin

Defending champ: IRC; runnerup: Tampa Prep

Schedule: Tuesday — IRC vs. Calvary, 6; Tampa Prep vs. Bishop McLaughlin, 7:30. Thursday — Final, 7.

Skinny Players to watch
Can IRC win its third title in a row? The Golden Eagles defeated Tampa Prep the past two years in the final. It's a virtual lock those two will meet a third time for the district crown. Tampa Prep won both regular-season meetings. Calvary: Rebekah Morgan IRC: Marisa Moralobo
Class 2A, District 11 at Northside Christian

Seeds: 1. Northside Christian 2. Bradenton St. Stephen's Episcopal 3. Shorecrest 4. Keswick Christian

Defending champ: Northside; runnerup: Keswick

Schedule: Tuesday — Episcopal vs. Shorecrest, 5:30; Northside vs. Keswick, 7. Thursday — Final, 7.

Skinny Players to watch
Northside is in excellent position to win its second straight title. The Mustangs rolled through their six-match district schedule without dropping a game. Northside: Callie Hasko
Class A, District 9 at Academy at the Lakes

Seeds: 1. Canterbury 2. Academy at the Lakes 3. Lakeside Christian 4. Citrus Park Christian 5. Oldsmar Christian 6. Carrollwood Day School

Defending champ: Canterbury; runnerup: Lakeside

Schedule: Today — Citrus Park vs. Oldsmar, 5; Lakeside vs. Carrollwood, 6:30. Tuesday — Citrus Park-Oldsmar winner vs. Canterbury, 5; Lakeside-Carrollwood winner vs. Academy, 6:30. Thursday — Final, 6:30.

Skinny Players to watch
In amassing a 10-0 regular-season district record, Canterbury lost only two games, both to Academy. Expect those two to meet in the final with the Crusaders again emerging victorious. Canterbury: Megan Burgess

District volleyball preview 10/30/08 [Last modified: Thursday, October 30, 2008 5:21pm]

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