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Team hosts Huron in first round of DistrictsThursday

The District 3 No. 2-ranked Kernels host No. 3 Huron at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Mitchell High School gymnasium in postseason action.

In the previous matchups between the rival schools, both matches were decided in the fifth set.

The Tigers (11-8) came back from two sets down to beat the Kernels (13-7) in the first meeting on Sept. 8 at the Corn Palace, and Mitchell came back from two sets down to beat the Tigers in the second meeting Oct. 9 at the Huron Arena.

Mitchell head coach Deb Thill said the smaller gym will cause a different feel than the first two matches had.

"We'll have to be able to handle the noise level that I think will be here," Thill said. "(Huron) is playing well right now and we're going to have contain Katelyn Allerdings and their offense and really step up and play defense."

Kernel setter Kendra Morgan said the team is excited to play the Tigers with the Kernel crowd behind it.

"Our crowd really helps us out in our gym," she said. "We really appreciate them because they pump us up and I think that will help us along with a good week of practice in that match."

The winners of the Mitchell vs. Huron match and the Aberdeen Central vs. Pierre match will face off in the District 3 championship, while the losers will play for a spot in the region qualifier.

The winner of the District 3 championship match receives an automatic berth to the state tournament, which is Nov. 15-17 in Rapid City, while the loser must win a region match to earn a trip to the state tournament.

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