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Beavers, Titans hold win streaks of 17

Hanson’s Emily Brown (6) hits the ball while teammate Hailey Doyle looks on during a high school volleyball match against Mount Vernon/Plankinton earlier this season. Also pictured is Mount Vernon/Plankinton’s Makaela Karst (2), Mikayla Weiss (4) and Jordan Acterberg, right. Both teams have won 17 consecutive matches. (Aaron Saunders/Republic)

ALEXANDRIA — Mount Vernon/Plankinton and Hanson are putting consistent “Ws” on their volleyball schedules.

The teams have each tallied 17 consecutive wins.

“We just take it one game at a time,” Hanson head coach Yolanda Price said. “We don’t talk a lot about our record and just focus on our opponent. We don’t try to hype it up and don’t want to overlook anybody.”

Hanson (21-1) recorded its 17th straight win Tuesday in a three-set win over Freeman, while the Titans (19-2) won their 17th consecutive victory Monday in a come-from-behind five-set win over Parkston.

Both teams earned recognition in the South Dakota Sportswriters Association’s volleyball poll this week. Hanson is receiving votes in Class B, while Mount Vernon/Plankinton (19-2) moved into the top five for the first time this season, taking the fifth spot.

Selfless play has played a major role in the teams’ success.

“It’s all because we’re playing together,” said Mount Vernon/Plankinton head coach Darcy Deinert, whose team is in its second year of its co-op. “We’re believing in each other and working toward a common goal.”

The Titans began their streak on Sept. 14 with three wins at a tournament in Kimball. Of the 17 straight wins, Mount Vernon/ Plankinton has swept 14 matches.

With three games remaining in the regular season, the Titans look to push for a strong finish. In Mount Vernon/Plankinton’s final regular-season match, it hosts No. 3 Winner (21-3) on Oct. 31 in Plankinton.

Junior middle hitter Dani Stoltz and sophomore outside hitter Makaela Karst have led the way offensively for the Titans. Stoltz has a team-leading 130 kills and Karst has totaled 117 kills. Deinert added a big part of her team’s defense is Megan Bultsma, a 6-foot-2 sophomore middle hitter, who leads the team in blocks.

The Titans’ last loss was against Hanson in a five-setter on Sept. 12 in Mount Vernon. The Beavers’ win streak began in the match prior to the five-set victory in a sweep over Howard on Sept. 10.

The Beavers are led by the commanding attack of sophomore outside hitter Kynedi Cheeseman. She’s tallied a team-high 242 kills this season.

“She’s a smart player and can see the court really well,” Price said. “She was willing to move to outside hitter this year and she’s adjusted her hit.”

Junior middle hitter Katlyn Schroeder and senior outside hitter Sydney Dodd also have tallied more than 100 kills with 148 and 144, respectively. Defensively, senior defensive specialist Leah Marsh leads the team with 310.

Of Hanson’s 17 straight wins, 10 have been three-set wins and five have fallen the Beavers’ way in five sets. Hanson ends its regular season Monday against McCook Central/Montrose in Alexandria.

Brooke Cersosimo
Brooke Cersosimo is The Daily Republic's sports editor.