Seven Midlands teams survived first-round testing in the state volleyball playoffs on Tuesday.
In Class 4A, Blythewood, Lugoff-Elgin, Lexington and White Knoll advanced to second-round play with early wins. Second-ranked Blythewood rolled over Fort Mill 3-0 (25-14, 25-13, 25-14) as Abrela Epps had 16 kills and Gabriela Martinez rang up 30 assists. Lugoff-Elgin was a 3-0 winner at home against Northwestern. Seventh-ranked Lexington was pushed to the limit by Spring Valley before emerging with a 3-2 win (25-15, 22-25, 25-15, 22-25, 15-12). Taylor Foulks has 11 kills for the Wildcats, while Katlyn McDaniel has a game high 13 kills for SV. White Knoll, the No. 4 seed out of Region 5, pulled off a 3-0 win over Region 6 champion Carolina Forest.
Ridge View, meanwhile, was shown the door by two-time defending Lower State champion Aiken.
Blythewood is the only area survivor with a home date in the second round on Thursday. The Bengals host Riverside. Otherwise, Lugoff-Elgin has a demanding second-round date at Dorman, Lexington is off to play Bluffton and White Knoll’s road leads to West Ashley, a No. 3 seed and another upset winner in the first round.
Region 4 powers Camden and Chapin scored first-round wins at home. Region 5 champion Airport was another first-round winner. Camden and Airport have second-round games at home on Thursday. Camden hosts Clinton in the Uppper State bracket, while Airport welcomes St. James for what may be a tough Lower State outing. Chapin hits the road to face Region 2 champion Chapman. Becca Barton led the Eagles in their 3-0 success against Greer with 12 kills, two aces, seven digs and two blocks.
Brookland-Cayce, A.C. Flora, Gilbert and Westwood were eliminated on Tuesday. B-C dropped a 3-1 decision at home to Hanahan. It was the third year in a row the once mighty Bearcats fell in the first round. Gilbert's first appearance in the 3A playoffs resulted in a 3-1 loss at James Island.