MARSHALL - With section tournaments starting in a week, area volleyball teams prepared themselves for the postseason by getting in a heavy workout over the weekend at the Subway Classic at Southwest Minnesota State University.
After playing two matches on Friday, each team had three matches on Saturday, and by the end of the second day, it was the squads that withstood the fatigue the best which had the most success.
Central Minnesota Christian won all five of its matches in the tournament, including a 25-22, 25-23 win over Windom in the Gold Division championship match to claim the tourney title.
Photo by Matt Dahlseid
Dawson-Boyd outside hitter Katarina Kuhlmann, second from right, rises up to hit the ball as Russll-Tyler-Ruthton’s Amanda Petersen, second from left, and Destinee Strand, right, jump up for a block attempt during the fifth-place match of the Gold Division of the Subway Classic volleyball tournament Saturday at the R/A Facility at Southwest Minnesota State University.
Four Marshall-area squads - Dawson-Boyd, Russell-Tyler-Ruthton, Murray County Central and Westbrook-Walnut Grove - advanced to the Gold Division after the first day of play, but each of them lost their first match Saturday and had to battle it out in the consolation rounds.
The Blackjacks bounced back from their quarterfinals loss to CMCS (25-19, 25-20) to beat WWG 25-19, 25-23 before facing RTR in the fifth-place match. The Blackjacks cruised to a first-set win against the Knights and held on in the second set for a 25-15, 25-23 victory.
Dawson-Boyd's head coach, Ashley Dahl, was at a wedding Saturday, so assistant coach Tanya Thesing took over command for the day. Other than a lapse in the team's first match of the day against CMCS, she felt the Blackjacks performed well and are ready for today's Camden Conference championship match against third-ranked Minneota. The Vikings beat Dawson-Boyd in straight sets last week and the Blackjacks are looking for a better showing this time.
"We're coming together as a team," Thesing said. "Hopefully we're peaking at the right time. We kind of used this weekend to try some different things to get them ready to go on Monday. It's going to be exciting."
Before falling to Dawson-Boyd in the fifth-place match, RTR opened the day by getting swept by Windom (25-16, 25-19), then won a hard-fought match with MCC, 28-26, 25-23.
RTR head coach TJ Williams said he wasn't very pleased with how the Knights came out in the first set against the Blackjacks, but left the tournament with a better feeling about his team after its play in the second set.
"The first set, I don't know, it seemed like we were a little flat," he said. "Before the second set I told the girls, 'You just gotta go out and have fun, because if you're not going to have fun I can find six other girls who can have fun playing the game for us.' They stepped it up in that second set and were playing hard. It looked like they were having fun playing again, so that's what we need to do here down the home stretch."
MCC lost two matches and the first set of its seventh-place match against WWG before the Rebels found some momentum. The Rebels lost their opening match of the day to Southwest United, 25-23, 24-26, 15-12, before their loss in straight sets to RTR. They got off to a very slow start against WWG, then fought off a handful of set points to finally get in their groove. MCC eventually won the match 21-25, 25-14, 20-18.
"We made a little run at the end of the first set there," MCC head coach Kati Bobeldyk said. "I think it was a little late to put that game away with Westbrook sitting on game point when we made our run, but that definitely helped carried the momentum in our favor into the next two games."
The Chargers, who were swept by Springfield (25-19, 25-14) and Dawson-Boyd earlier in the day, were playing without key contributor Madison Takle, who was out with an illness. In the opening game against MCC, the Rebels were looking strong, but they fell apart in the second set and weren't quite able to recover.
"Our passing just went downhill and then we didn't know how to bring ourselves back from it," WWG head coach Cathy Baumann said. "We'd have a few good plays, but we were just erratic on the court, I thought. I tried to stress to the girls to make smart plays, but we got a little excited.
"Basically, we just need to get our heads back in the game, that's what it comes down to. We kind of get the best of ourselves. I feel like we could have won that, we should have won that."
WWG and MCC will be back at it tonight for a Red Rock Conference match in Westbrook to close out the regular season.
Wabasso and Red Rock Central each took part in Brown Division play on Saturday. The Rabbits opened with a 27-25, 18-25, 16-14 win over Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop before losing in two sets to Worthington (25-20, 25-22). In the third-place match for the division, Wabasso controlled play throughout a 25-18, 25-22 win over St. James.
"It was a little disappointing because we wanted to get into the Gold Division, but lost to Dawson in three on Friday," Wabasso head coach Barb Johnson said. "But overall, we played pretty well over the whole weekend. I can't look back and see anything we could have really changed. Maybe a couple of plays here and there, but overall, I thought we played pretty solid."
Red Rock Central lost its first two matches Saturday before earning a 25-23, 25-22 win over GFW in the 13th-place match.
Falcons head coach Sara Arfsten said she saw some good things from her team during the tournament, especially its serving.
"Serving-wise, to have your team serve 97.4 percent is pretty incredible. I'll take that any day," she said.
Lincoln HI competed in the White Division on Saturday. Entering the day winless on the season, the Rebels got a big confidence boost by picking up a pair of wins. Lincoln HI defeated Martin Luther/Granada-Huntly 23-25, 25-23, 15-11 and also topped Lac qui Parle Valley 11-25, 25-19, 25-10.
Windom Area def. Russell-Tyler-Ruthton 25-16, 25-19; Southwest United def. Murray County Central 25-23, 24-26, 15-12; Springfield def. Westbrook-Walnut Grove 25-21, 25-14; Central Minnesota Christian def. Dawson-Boyd 25-19, 25-20
Windom def. Southwest United 25-13, 25-18; CMCS def. Springfield 25-19, 23-25, 15-9
CMCS def. Windom 25-22, 25-23
Springfield def. Southwest United 25-17, 25-15
RTR def. MCC 28-26, 25-23; Dawson-Boyd def. WWG 25-19, 25-23
Dawson-Boyd def. RTR 25-15, 25-23
MCC def. WWG 21-25, 25-14, 20-18
Wabasso def. Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop 27-25, 25-18, 16-24; Worthington def. Red Rock Central 25-20, 25-16; St. James def. Renville County West 25-21, 21-25, 15-12; MACCRAY def. Adrian 25-11, 25-12
Worthington def. Wabasso 25-20, 25-22; MACCRAY def. St. James 27-25, 25-20
MACCRAY def. Worthington 25-22, 25-18
Third Place Brown (11th Overall)
Wabasso def. St. James 25-18, 25-15
RRC def. GFW 25-23, 25-22; RCW def. Adrian 25-19, 25-22
RRC def. RCW 18-25, 25-21, 15-4
GFW def. Adrian 25-17, 25-22
White Division (Local Results)
Lincoln HI def. Martin Luther/Granada-Huntley 23-25, 25-23, 15-11; Fulda def. Lincoln HI 25-8, 25-18; Lincoln HI def. Lac qui Parle Valley 11-25, 25-19, 25-10.
D-B INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Serving (good-att-aces): Kylie Schuelke 47-47-9, Justine Flattum 38-40-6.
Kills: Mari Lee 43, Justine Lee 41.
Digs: Scheulke 41, J. Lee 35.
Set Assists: Flattum 62, Andrea Lee 34.
Blocks: M. Lee 3.
WWG INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Serving (good-att-aces): Dayna Comnick 52-52-7, Abby Herding 46-48-5, Alexa Byers 30-31-1, Paige Erickson 36-38-0.
Kills: Erickson 41, Comnick 38, Hailey Osland 22, Kelsi Wahl 14.
Digs: Comnick 42, Erickson 39, Herding 23, Osland 23.
Set Assists: Herding 98.
Blocks (solo-assists): Osland 2-4, Comnick 2-3, Wahl 2-2, Erickson 1-2.
LINCOLN HI INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Ace Serves: Morgan Citterman 9, KaLea DeSmet 9, Alyssa Otto 5.
Kills: DeSmet 14, Maranda Jerzak 10, Otto 9, Citterman 8.
Digs: Citterman 10.
Set Assists: Caroline Bunjer 20.
Blocks: Jerzak 5, Otto 3.
WABASSO INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Serving (good-att-aces): Larissa Rohlik 5, Ellen Franta 5, Desi Kramer 4.
Kills: Kramer 33, Kimberly Frank 26, Chelsey Guetter 39.
Digs: Kramer 25, K. Frank 20, Guetter 22, Jamie Goblirsch 28.
Set Assists: Rohlik 43, K. Frank 73.
Solo Blocks: Morgan Frank 4, Chelsey Guetter 3.
RRC INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Serving (good-att-aces): Brooke Rasmussen 47-47-6, Cassaundra Erickson 40-40-4, Mikaela Smith 40-41-3.
Kills: Chloe Arfsten 26, Katie Larsen 20, Fern Engen 17, Erickson 17.
Digs: Rasmussen 37, Arfsten 30, Erickson 20.
Set Assists: Smith 42, Tegan Derickson 37.
Blocks (solo-assists): Engen 5-7, Larsen 5-4.