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The Sleepy Eye Herald Dispatch
  • Consistency leads St. Mary's past MVL in straight sets

  • It didn’t come easy, but the Knights recorded a Tomahawk Conference win on Sept. 2 at home in straight sets.
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  • St. Mary’s 3
    MVL 0
     
    It didn’t come easy, but the Knights recorded a Tomahawk Conference win on Sept. 2 at home in straight sets.
     
    St. Mary’s got to work right away in the first set. The Knights had plenty of energy as they went up 8-5 before stretching the lead to 12-8. St. Mary’s hit well offensively and made little mistakes on defense. Meanwhile, Minnesota Valley Lutheran had some communication errors which led to more points for the Knights. It was a steady five point lead throughout, and St. Mary’s took the first set 25-16.
     
    The Chargers must have warmed up as they were off to a quick start in the second. The Knights couldn’t handle a few spikes from MVL’s front line as the Chargers scored six points in a row to make it 12-6. However, St. Mary’s bounced right back and made it a game with solid passing and plenty of clutch digs defensively. After being down near the end of the set, the Knights tied it and went on to win two more to grab the second set 25-23.
     
    St. Mary’s Coach Jen Walter said she attributes the comeback to her girls never letting down and continuing to hit hard.
     
    “I liked to see us play aggressive, even when we were down. I think that’s something we’ve been trying to improve on. Not play safe, play to win.”
     
    A similar situation played out in the third, as both teams played consistent enough to keep the set close. After several close rallies and back-and-forth leads, the Knights won the third with the same two point margin as before, 25-23 to take the game in straight sets.
     
    Senior Becca Schmitz led offensively after recording 13 kills. She also had 10 digs on defense. Behind her was Tori Anderson, who recorded six kills, 13 digs, and four aces. Meanwhile, freshman Jody Hansen led in assists with 18 and Taylor Pelzel had 14. Laura Pelzel added 13 digs on defense, and junior Brianna Bertrand added three blocks in the win.
     
    St. Mary’s moves to 3-0 and will play in Sleepy Eye Public’s invitational this weekend, something of which Walter said will be beneficial for the team.
     
    “It’s nice to get some girls some playing time, and building up a little endurance. We did look tired (tonight). I could tell we were fatigued.”

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