Avery Pennekamp

Avery Pennekamp had 24 kills as the McFarland volleyball team won the Rock Valley Conference tournament with three wins over East Troy, Brodhead and Clinton.

It was Oct. 1 when the McFarland High School volleyball team took on WIAA defending state champion East Troy in a Rock Valley Conference match. After losing in the first set, the Spartans won the next three to defeat the Trojans in a contest filled with energy and emotion.

To prove that was no accident, the Spartans took on East Troy Saturday, Oct. 19, for the championship of the Rock Valley Conference tournament in Edgerton and won again.Avery Pennekamp had 11 kills, Katie Hildebrandt was credited with three service aces and Gwen Crull had six total blocks as McFarland prevailed 25-12, 22-25, 15-11. Erin Eggers led McFarland with 16 digs, and Lizzy Fortune managed 20 assists and 10 digs as the Spartans improved to 32-2 overall and extended its winning streak to 25 matches in a row. McFarland reached the championship round after a 25-18, 25-17 win in the semifinal round.

Hildebrandt had 10 kills, and Pennekamp and Nina Crull each had six, Gwen Crull pitched in with six total blocks, Eggers had 11 digs, and Lizzy Fortune dished out 24 assists.

The Spartans earned an easy 25-16, 25-8 win over Clinton in their first-round match. Pennekamp had seven kills, Hildebrandt had seven service aces while Maddy Fortune added four, Eggers came up with 14 digs, and Lizzy Fortune added 16 assists.

McFarland, which has the No. 2 seed in the WIAA Division 2 state tournament, begins play at home Thursday, Oct. 24, against No. 7 Dodgeville or No. 10 Prairie du Chien. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m. If the Spartans win, they would host the regional championship match Saturday, Oct. 26.

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