BIDDEFORD — Biddeford High’s volleyball team kept its cool when Deering looked ready to extend their Class A quarterfinal Saturday and continued to find open areas with well-placed tips to finish off a three-game victory, 25-15, 25-18, 25-22.

Fourth-seeded Biddeford (11-4) advances to a semifinal Wednesday at No. 1 Falmouth (14-1). Falmouth beat Biddeford 3-0 in the regular season, but the game scores were all close: 25-21, 26-24, 25-22.

Against No. 5 Deering (9-6), 16 of Biddeford’s 37 kills came off tips from Grace Martin (23 total kills), Grace Boisvert (eight) and middle hitter Anya Kaminski, including Boisvert’s match-winning point. Because each of the Tiger hitters also showed the ability to put down a forceful hit, the change-ups around Deering’s blockers worked well. Martin used a tip for 10 of her kills, including two high-flying redirects with her left-hand.

“I just have to remember where to put it. She’s very good at not only slamming the ball, but at placing it (in) places where people aren’t standing and ready to receive it,” said Biddeford setter Brooke Reissfelder.

“Although we did adjust our defense for them, there were many, many tips for them,” said Deering Coach Nika Francois. “It was a great matchup. We just needed to finish it, and that’s what we just couldn’t do.”

Biddeford controlled play through most of the first two games, with Martin the focal point of the offense. Kaminski got both game-winning points.

In a regular-season win, Biddeford also took the first two games in handy fashion, only to have Deering recover and force the match to a fifth game.

When Deering opened a 12-6 lead in the third game, Biddeford Coach Ruth Shaw said she “was having nightmares.” The Rams picked up their play with good serving from Catherine Balzano and kills from Ava Spach (eight kills, one block), Victoria Garand (eight kills) and Balzano.

But Shaw could tell her team was responding appropriately.

“It’s taken us all season for them to really believe that a point is a point, but the game and the match has to be played through the entirety,” Shaw said. “In that third game, when Deering was up on us, this was the first time I looked at my team and I went, ‘huh, I’m not worried.’ They were focusing.”

Steve Craig can be reached at 791-6413 or:

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