Volleyball: Wolves slip up on home court
Riding the 20-kill performance of junior Courtney Place, who already has more than 1,000 kills in her varsity career, Southwestern United swept Harris-Lake Park in a Iowa-Minnesota border battle Monday night in Lake Park. Game scores were 25-15, 25-17 and 25-18.
Something had to give between two squads that have been playing at a high level over the past few weeks. The Wildcats ran off their 12th consecutive victory behind Place's big night to improve to 16-4-1 this season, while the Wolves fell to 23-9 overall.
"It was all based off of service receive," said Harris-Lake Park coach Daryl Meyer. "They have four really quality hitters that all of them can do some damage and Courtney Place went off on us. She's special talent and when you give those guys free balls it makes them shine even more. We struggled in service receive, which compounded the issue and that just made everything worse. They put on a lot of service pressure like we are trying to do to other teams and they outdid us in that aspect of the game."
Meyer believes a tough match like this will pay dividends down the road come tournament time.
"It was fun to get pushed and make us raise our level," he said. "We have to be ready for teams that are like Southwestern United and hopefully we can react differently performance wise the next time. Our kids tried really really hard, but trying hard and performing hard are two different things. You have to be able to execute when the pressure is on."
The Wolves served at 92.3 percent with Megan Garms (12-for-12), Grace Heikens (8-for-8) and Grace Winters (6-for-6) all turning in solid nights. H-LP, however, was limited to three aces with Garms serving up two of them.
Noreen Morrow led the offense with 10 kills, followed by Miranda Brueggeman and Katherin Ihnen with five each.
Macy Gunderson had four kills, 21 set assists and was the top back row performer with 12 digs.
Brueggeman added 11 digs and Heikens finished with 10. Morrow also led the Wolves with 1.5 blocks.