By Travis Smola
Vicksburg’s young varsity volleyball team beat Sturgis, South Haven and Edwardsburg to win an extremely scrappy Wolverine Conference tournament.
“We just played out of our minds,” Head Coach Katrina Miller said.
The Lady Bulldogs beat Sturgis 25-17 and 25-22 before beating Edwardsburg 25-16 and 27-25. They went four sets against South Haven, winning the final set 25-16. Senior Morgan Preston served up 10 aces against South Haven, while fellow senior Anna Schriemer added four of her own.
Leading the way in kills was sophomore Rylie Richter with 10. She was closely followed by junior Kaytee Harvey, who had nine. As usual, Preston led the team in digs with 19. Sophomore Camille Wadley and Schriemer each had 10; sophomore Tailynn Knapp had nine.
While the Lady Bulldogs were able to enjoy a big victory in the tournament on Saturday, the Wolverine Conference is a tough place to play. The girls lost to Edwardsburg the following Monday in District play to end their season earlier than they had hoped.
But Vicksburg didn’t go out without a fight. The two teams went five sets. After losing the first two sets 25-20 and 25-22, the Lady Bulldogs bounced back by winning three and four 25-23 and 25-18. They lost the fifth set 15-11.
Miller said it is tough to play a conference foe like Edwardsburg on one day and then play them again two days later with no practice time in between. “It was two good teams,” Miller said. “We both played well.”
Still, the future looks bright. The Lady Bulldogs lose only two seniors. Preston finishes her high school career with 2,310 digs, 277 aces and 157 kills in 440 sets. Schriemer racked up 2,429 assists, 998 digs, 465 kills and 186 aces in 364 career sets.
Beyond the volleyball court however, Miller calls the seniors two of the best players she’s ever coached. She said the younger players have strived to be like them. “The respect they earned from our girls was unbelievable.”
The Lady Bulldogs finish their year with a very respectable 24-16-6 record, with a 7-2 conference record.