MILWAUKEE — Waterloo’s volleyball team placed 11th out of 28 teams at the highly competitive Eastbay Charger Rally at the Milwaukee Sting Center on Saturday. The field featured 11 teams in Division 1, five teams in Divsion 2 and two teams in Division 3 that were ranked in the recent state coaches poll.
The Pirates opened with a 26-24, 25-19 win over Howards Grove, a team which has been ranked first or second in D3 all season.
“The first set was back and forth and nerves were evident as both teams were missing quite a few serves,” Waterloo volleyball coach Christy Mosher said. “They have two D1 commits in their backcourt, so our challenge was to keep pressure on them from the service line and run our offense fast. I felt we won the serve and pass game and Libero Michaela Riege did an outstanding job of keeping us in system.”
Joslyn Wolff and Brooke Mosher combined for 17 kills in the victory.
“We were able to hit seams in their block and avoid their defenders,” coach Mosher said. “Wolff also had a season high 14 digs which was key as they tip and roll a lot and she picked those up to give us a chance. Abbie Gier came up with two clutch kills and Kamden Fitzgerald went on a couple nice serving runs as it was a total team effort.”
Waterloo matched up with eighth-ranked Sun Prairie in the next pool play match and came up just short in an 18-25, 25-23, 15-17 defeat.
“Watching the film, it was really an amazing match by both sides,” coach Mosher said.
“We came up just short 15-17 in the third set but we grew as a team and I am proud of them for coming back from down 10-1 to take the second set 25-23. Sophia Schneider had some crucial digs on their high flying hitters and was swinging hard in her own right. Brooke was really fun to watch this match especially the first kill of the third set when she crushed a Wolff set down the line and bounced it between their setters legs.
“Rylee Duessler stepped up offensively and Ashley Batz came up with five digs down the stretch. Perhaps the biggest block for us the whole weekend came when we were down 14-13 in the third as Sydney Schonhoff stuffed their pin to force extra points. We had key contributions from everyone that match and it was a great battle.”
Waterloo went on to beat Brookfield East 18-25, 25-18, 15-10, lose to Kimberly 18-25, 24-26 and finish with a 17-25, 25-14, 15-8 win over ninth-ranked Waunakee in the Silver Bracket.
“After dropping the first set, we brought in some fresh legs in the middle and Skyler Powers was able to get quite a few touches on their attack and contributed two blocks,” coach Mosher said.
For the tournament, Brooke Mosher finished with 61 kills, 55 assists, 36 digs, nine aces and eight blocks.
Wolff had 43 kills, 46 digs and eight blocks. Duessler had 22 kills. Schneider had 20 kills, 36 digs and eight blocks. Schonhoff had 11 blocks.
Fitzgerald served 13 aces. Riege had 58 digs and served nine aces.