ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Kernels cut down Lynx in four sets

From time to time, Mitchell coach Deb Thill says, the Kernel volleyball team "rides the rollercoaster," where they play well in one set and struggle in the next.

Mitchell's Chelsea Brewster (14) attempts a kill over Brandon Valley's Abby Myers (16) during an Eastern South Dakota Conference Tuesday at the Mitchell High School gym. (Marcus Traxler/Republic)
Mitchell's Chelsea Brewster (14) attempts a kill over Brandon Valley's Abby Myers (16) during an Eastern South Dakota Conference Tuesday at the Mitchell High School gym. (Marcus Traxler/Republic)

From time to time, Mitchell coach Deb Thill says, the Kernel volleyball team "rides the rollercoaster," where they play well in one set and struggle in the next.

But the rollercoaster was mostly good to the Kernels on Tuesday.

Mitchell won the first two sets of their Eastern South Dakota Conference match with Brandon Valley and ran away with a four-set victory over the Lynx at the Mitchell High School gym.

Set scores were 25-19, 25-22, 20-25 and 25-13, as Mitchell improved to 7-3 on the year and 6-3 in the ESD.

The match was the opposite of the meeting between the two teams three weeks earlier on Sept. 6. That was when Brandon Valley defeated Mitchell 3-0 in Brandon and the Kernels were the team that looked mostly off-balance.

ADVERTISEMENT

"We brought the energy tonight," Kernels senior Jenna Weich said. "We know that in Brandon, our energy was kind of down in the dumps, so we wanted to show how we can play tonight."

"The difference between the first time we played them and now was our ball control," Thill added. "It was much, much better tonight. We are better now than we were then and we're passing the ball much better."

Mitchell had large leads in three of the four sets and won each of those three sets. The Kernels led 19-9 in the first set, despite some errors and held off a late BV charge in the set. Set two was tight for much of the way and Mitchell fell behind 21-19 but took advantage of an attack hitting the antenna and a block from Carly Haring and Weich to tie the set at 21. Mitchell would score five of the next six points to go up 2-1.

"In that second set, I thought it was really indicative of our team," Thill said. "We had to come back a little bit and it showed what kind of depth we have."

Brandon Valley's best set came in the third frame, scoring five of the last six points in the set for a 25-20 win. But Mitchell put it all together in the fourth set and breezed to the conference win.

For Lynx coach Dacia Boehrns, her team made far too many errors to compete with Mitchell on Tuesday. Brandon Valley (6-6) hosts No. 2 Sioux Falls Roosevelt on Thursday.

"We just had too many errors and we had them in almost every part of our game," she said. "We just can't play like that and Mitchell took advantage."

Weich said the team has been working hard in practice, taking advantage of playing their third match since Sept. 13. Mitchell played six matches in the first two weeks of the season.

ADVERTISEMENT

"We've been working on our serve-receive, which has helped a lot and we're becoming a better team each time out," Weich said.

Mackenzie Miller led the Kernels with 14 kills and 17 digs. Chelsea Brewster finished with 12 kills, Haring had 11 kills and four blocks and Lauren Larson had 15 digs and two aces. Weich added seven kills.

Mandy Schmidt had 42 set assists in the win and Thill complimented her effort, adding that the ability to keep Schmidt in system and allowing her to distribute the ball made a difference in the match.

For Brandon Valley, Hanna Jellema had 14 kills and five blocks, while Elsie Zajicek had eight kills. Ally Reinschmidt had 13 digs, Paige Timmons had five blocks and Becca Koehn had 34 digs.

The win brought Mitchell to its second three-match winning streak of the season. They will look to make it four in a row Thursday at Yankton (1-10).

Subvarsity:

JV: Mitchell won 25-19, 25-21. Chelsea Brewster had five kills, one block and three digs. Tess Limberg had four kills and 10 digs and Bridget Thill had four aces and six digs.

Sophomore: Brandon Valley won 23-25, 25-23 and 15-13. Brooke Flemmer had four aces and nine kills and both Limberg and Lesley Von Drongelen had 12 digs.

ADVERTISEMENT

Freshman A: Mitchell won 23-25, 25-12 and 15-12.

Freshman B: Mithcell won 23-25, 25-5 and 15-5.

Mitchell's Mandy Schmidt (5) sets the ball during an Eastern South Dakota Conference match against Brandon Valley Tuesday at the Mitchell High School gym. (Marcus Traxler/Republic)
Mitchell's Mandy Schmidt (5) sets the ball during an Eastern South Dakota Conference match against Brandon Valley Tuesday at the Mitchell High School gym. (Marcus Traxler/Republic)

Related Topics: KERNELSVOLLEYBALL
Traxler is the assistant editor and sports editor for the Mitchell Republic. He's worked for the newspaper since 2014 and has covered a wide variety of topics. He can be reached at mtraxler@mitchellrepublic.com.
What To Read Next
Prep basketball action from around the state for Thursday, Jan. 26.
Coyote men fall on buzzer-beater in Macomb
Members Only
Mitchell, Madison and Brookings compete in gymnastic triangular.
Members Only
"Maybe not a lot of other people thought we'd be in the situation we're in right now, but we knew," said senior guard Dylan Soulek of the Kernels' 7-2 start.