LYONS – On Saturday, the Little River volleyball team went on the road to play at the Lyons Invitational where they finished 3-2 for the day which was good for third place.
Going into the tournament the Lady Redskins were ranked number one in Class 1A Division I by the Kansas Volleyball Association, new rankings will be released on Wednesday.
In pool play, Little River started out with a straight set win over host Lyons, winning 25-19, 25-19 and then followed that up with a tougher straight set win over Kingman, 28-26, 25-17.
In their final match of pool play, the Lady Redskins scored a 25-18 win in the first set with Ell-Saline before Ell-Saline got the best of them in the final two sets by a total of 5 points, 22-25 and 26-28.
“We battled against a strong Ell-Saline team in pool play before losing a heartbreaking two-point third set,” noted Lady Redskin head coach Kim Rolfs.
In the semi-final match, Little River battled through the first two sets, losing a close 22-25 fight in set one before pulling away for a 25-15 win in set two. In the final set, poor serving cost them in a 13-25 loss.
Coach Rolfs talked about the semi-finals by adding, “Against Southeast of Saline we played very solid and consistent in the second set which showed in the score. I have said all along we have the tools to be really good only if we control the ball. Looking at the stats, we had our worst series of serve receive that we had all day in that third set against Southeast of Saline along with a few calls not going our way resulted in just a really bad set for us.”
Taking on a rematch with Ell-Saline for third place, the Lady Redskins lost the first set by just a pair of points, 24-26 before pulling through and winning the final two sets, 25-16, 25-21 to finish third in the Invitational.
“The only good that came out of losing the semis was the rematch with Ell-Saline,” explained coach Rolfs. “Super proud of battling through the first set loss against them and toughening up and winning the next two for the match and getting third place. I felt like we could have just let the wheels fall off after losing that first set, but we showed some grit and completed the win.”
Several Lady Redskins had outstanding days with Aubrey Olander making 17 blocks and recording 46 kills while Alaina Eck recorded 49 kills while taking 60 digs. Chenzi DeBaere and Kate Ellwood shared the directing of the Little River offense well by dishing out 69 and 57 assists, respectively.
Coach Rolfs concluded her post-tournament reflections by saying, “We had some really good performances for the day from several kids. Overall, not a bad day for our girls.”
LITTLE RIVER LADY REDSKINS at Lyons Invitational
- Lyons – won 25-19, 25-19
- Kingman – won 28-26, 25-17
- Ell-Saline – lost 25-18, 22-25, 26-28
- Southeast of Saline – lost 22-25, 25-15, 13-25
- Ell-Saline – won 24-26, 25-16, 25-21
LADY REDSKIN STAT LEADERS:
Blocks: Aubrey Olander – 17; Havana Olander – 11; Lucy Wright – 9; Ashley Stephenson, Kami Grasser – 7.
Kills: Alaina Eck – 49; Aubrey Olander – 46; Ashley Stephenson – 23; Kami Grasser – 20; Havana Olander – 18.
Digs: Alaina Eck – 60; Mea DeBaere – 52.
Assists: Chenzi DeBaere – 69; Kate Ellwood – 57.
Serve Aces: Chenzi DeBaere – 5.
(The Staff covering McPherson County Activities can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org)