2016-11-02 / Sports

Postseason underway for volleyball teams


North Branch’s Hannah Hodgkinson makes a play on the ball during their match with LakeVille in Monday’s district opener at LakeVille. 
Photo by Keith Warvie North Branch’s Hannah Hodgkinson makes a play on the ball during their match with LakeVille in Monday’s district opener at LakeVille. Photo by Keith Warvie LAPEER COUNTY – High school volleyball teams opened district play on Monday and today is semifinal day. Finals are Thursday and Saturday across the area. Below is a recap of what took place in the district openers.

Class A at Lapeer

The Class A district at Lapeer started Tuesday night after we went to press. Davison went head to head with Kearsley and Mt. Morris faced off against Arthur Hill. Lapeer plays the winner of Davison and Kearsley on Thursday at 5:30 p.m. and Clio plays the winner of Mt. Morris and Arthur Hill at 7 p.m. – K.R.

Class B at LakeVille

North Branch bounced back from a loss in the Tri-Valley Conference tournament against Frankenmuth Saturday by defeating LakeVille 25-6, 25-11, 25-18 in an opening round of districts Monday.

“We’re coming off a loss Saturday and we haven’t lost in a long time, so it was good to be able to play right away and not have to wait to get back on the court,” North Branch coach Jim Fish said. “LakeVille is much improved and we played very well.

“They caught us at a time where we were an angry team. We came out on fire tonight, very focused, played very fast, so we’re happy we’re moving on.”

North Branch jumped out to a quick 9-0 lead in the first set behind the serving of Madee Miner. Janel Ruhlman had a key kill during Miner’s run.

Ruhlman served three straight points later in the set to put the Broncos up 20-3. Allyson Severance helped out Ruhlman with two kills during the mini run. Olivia Fike’s kill closed out the first set. Fike finished with nine kills for the match.

The Broncos jumped out to another big lead early in the second set. A pair of kills by Fike put North Branch on top 8-1. The Broncos increased their lead to 21-6 with three points from Jinger Haynes. North Branch locked up the second set with a side out and a point off the serve of Emily Ruhlman.

The Broncos broke open a tight third set much later than in the first two. Hannah Hodgkinson served four straight points with the help of kills from Severance and Allison Brice to up a five-point lead to nine at 16-7. The advantage grew to 12 at 22-10 later in the set. Jordyn Slater’s kill finished off the Falcons.

The Broncos were without the services of senior libero Stephaney Fifield who injured her knee on Saturday. Fifield will not play in the districts and will test out the knee Friday in practice to see if she’ll be ready for regionals if North Branch advances that far.

“I hope she’s back,” Fish said of Fifield. “We’ve got to get her healthy. We definitely need her. She’s an All-State caliber player and we’ve got to have her back.”

Olivia Sweeney filled in for Fifield and played exceptionally well. She had seven digs for the match.

Reese Ruhlman led North Branch in digs with nine. Severance also had nine kills and Miner had seven aces, 23 assists, three digs and three kills.

The Broncos hit .477 as a team against LakeVille. They hit a meager .118 on Saturday.

“Your goal is to hit .300, so our offense was on tonight,” Fish said.

The Broncos will now face Cros-Lex in the semifinals at 6:30 p.m. today. The Pioneers defeated Yale in three sets in another first-round match Monday.

Almont defeated Imlay City, 25-23, 25-15, 25-18, in the Monday night district opener at Almont.

Lizette Sahagun had 26 assists, one solo block, four kills and four aces. Mickayla Benenati had nine kills and two aces. Cassie Latcha had six kills and Elizabeth Kerby and Kristen Stanek had five each. Kerby also had two aces and five digs. Meredith Rinke also added three kills and Maria Bussone had one. Jaclyn Hellebuyck had 10 digs.

Imlay City’s Catherine Lietz had five kills and four assist blocks. Erika Vanderploeg served seven points, including two aces, and had 15 assists. Sydney Reister had four assist blocks and one solo block. Claire Thibodeau had six digs and Drew Katkic and Melissa Rahn had five each.

Almont faces Caro in the district semifinals at 5 p.m. today. The Tigers received a first-round bye. The semifinal winners will meet for the title at 6 p.m. Thursday. – K.R./K.W.

Class C at New Haven

Dryden dropped a 23-25, 22-25, 11-25 decision to Memphis in an opening round match Monday. Amanda Lemke had 15 points and three digs. Delaney Hull added 12 points, four kills, four digs, three solo blocks and one block assist. Hannah Weiss had eight points, Kendall Lowe chipped in four points, Kelli Schenkel had four points, three kills and one dig.

Kayleigh Hudson had four points and three digs, Mia Sliman had three points, four assists and two kills, Natalie Poirier had two points and one assist. Lauren Trieloff had one point and four solo blocks, Alissa Hurd had two digs and Hunter Hofmann had an assist.

Memphis will play New Haven at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday after Mount Clemens defaulted to New Haven on Monday. Brown City defeated Capac 3-0 to win the other first-round match.

The Green Devils will face Landmark Academy, which had a bye in the first round in the other semifinal at 7 p.m. Wednesday.

The winners of the two semifinals will meet in the championship match at 7 p.m. Friday. – K.W.

Class D at Carsonville-Port Sanilac

Mayville ended its district run in the opening match against Deckerville Monday, losing 16-25, 14-25, 25-21, 13-25.

“Our girls came out with some fire, but Deckerville took control of the first game,” said coach Angie Campbell. “The third game proved to be our game, the girls played hard the entire game and were able to hold off the Eagles with a win. The fourth game proved to be the final game as the girls could not get a run going and saw Deckerville pull away without looking back.”

Rachel Cummings was 16-of- 18 serving with 11 points, two aces and 11 assists. Jessie Smith was 10-of-12 serving with eight points and two aces, she also had five kills and was 26-for-29 on serve receive. Larissa Drozdowski was 11-of- 12 serving with seven points, with 25 digs and 17-of-19 serve receive. Lauryn Frenzel had 45 digs and 15 kills and Carlie Meerschaert added another 25 digs.

Deckerville faces CPS in the district semifinals tonight. The winner of the two will face the winner of Peck and Kinde North Huron on Thursday for the district title. – K.R.

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