WALES — Too much Mary Satori and too little mojo. Those two factors played a huge role in Sun Prairie’s 25-17, 25-22, 25-23 loss to Manitowoc Lincoln in the WIAA State Girls Alternate Fall Volleyball Tournament semifinal loss Thursday at Kettle Moraine High School.
“Our mojo just wasn’t there tonight, it was just a little off,” said Cardinals head coach T.J. Rantala. “We had moments of greatness but we just weren’t able to put it all together tonight.”
Satori, a 5-foot-10 junior outside hitter, was nearly unstoppable finishing with 22 kills and a .450 attack percentage.
“Mary is a heck of a player,” said Rantala. “We tried to contain her. We did some good things on her but she has such a big swing and we just couldn’t get a good block on her; she’s a premier player.”
Satori also led the second-seeded Ships (16-1) with 14 digs and two service aces.
Meanwhile, the third-seeded Cardinals (10-4) were led by senior outside hitter Payton Addink’s 11 kills. Ironically, Satori and Addink will be future teammates at the University of Minnesota-Duluth.
Sun Prairie held one of its rare leads at 4-3 in the first game, but a Satori service ace gave Manitowoc Lincoln a 6-5 advantage, one it would not relinquish en route to the 25-17 win.
In Game 2 Sun Prairie rallied back from a 13-9 deficit, taking a 19-18 lead when Claire Swoboda’s spike sailed wide. The lead grew to 22-20 on a Ships hitting error.
Lincoln got a side-out and a back corner kill from Swoboda, and then the Ships found their go-to player as Satori had kills on two out of the next three points. An Addink hitting error gave Game 2 to Manitowoc, 25-22.
“We got nervous and they got one good kill, then we played to not lose instead of playing to win,” Rantala said. “We talked about that, you’ve got to play to win and volleyball’s such a silly game and a game of momentum. It’s amazing one good kill can flip-flop it.”
Lincoln led from wire-to-wire in the third game, with Satori fittingly ending the match with a spike through a double block attempt in the 25-23 win.
“Last August we didn’t think we were playing, heck, in January we didn’t know we were playing. It’s a tough loss and I’m super proud of these girls,” said an emotional Rantala. “When you look back at the start of our season we had two teams and no fans (so) to finish like this is pretty great.”
Junior setter Lily Schellpfeffer led the Cardinals with 25 assists, senior libero Emily Mickelson had a team-high 11 digs and senior middle blocker Maggie Allaman made a match-high two blocks.
Junior Sienna Rolling and sophomore Avree Antony each had six kills.
Swoboda had 11 kills to complement Satori, while Lauren Delmore set 43 assists for the Ships.
Other State Results
In the second state semifinal Thursday Appleton North defeated McFarland , 25-19, 25-15, 25-19, before winning Saturday’s Division 1 state championship over Manitowoc Lincoln, 25-20, 25-21, 25-17.