Paradise Adventist Academy (PAA, 29-3) played in Round I of the CIF NorCal Division VI Region playoffs on Wednesday against St. Bernard’s. With a three-set victory (25-13, 25-22, 25-10), in which Sarah Goymer and Quincey Carter together had 13 kills, PAA Coach Jason Eyer told the Chico Enterprise-Record, “We survived and we advanced. That’s the good thing.”
Little did Eyer know that the Cougars and the rest of the people of Paradise would soon be in another fight for survival – this time, for their lives and community. The day after PAA advanced to the Regional Semifinals, a feat the program has never achieved, Thursday prompted a forest fire evacuation for the town of 27,000 people due to the disaster known as Camp Fire.
As the fire quickly demolished Paradise, there were bigger things to worry about than a volleyball match and the CIF offered to postpone Saturday’s match. A distraction is sometimes welcome in difficult times, though, and the young women of PAA wanted to compete in the Regional match that no other team in a Cougars jersey has ever reached.
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