Central Nebraska Volleyball
Four Starters Return for Minutemaids
Lexington's girl's volleyball team finished with a final record of 3-25. The Minutemaids return four starters this season and second-year head coach Samantha Hammond believes the team will continue to grow. "This season we are really looking to continue to build on the foundation that last year’s team started. We are continuing to progress and become a competitive team. Our seniors are providing a great base of talent that mixes well with the incoming freshman group."
Even though Lexington will be experienced, there will be a couple of positions in which they will be young. "We will certainly be young when it comes to experience in a couple positions but I really look forward to seeing how those players develop. We have a jammed backed first week of games and really see this as a chance to see where we are this year and what we need to improve on," said Hammond.
The returning starters for Lexington are, Jennifer Nava (5-10, S, Sr.), Mollie Rowe (5-10, M, Sr.), Carlie Burkholder (5-5, DS, Sr.), and Jackie Ostrom (5-10, OH/M, So.). The Minutemaids will begin the season on August 28th against Holdrege.
Lady Dusters Look to Improve from last Season
Holdrege struggled on the volleyball court last season as they finished with a final record of 6-23. The Lady Dusters will look to bounce back as they have a number of athletes that will return for them. They will be led by senior Jenna Karn.
Karn led the team in digs with 278 and in serving with a 95.8% rate. Addison Johnson also will be pivotal as she had 103 kills and 19 blocks last season. Holdrege will begin the season on August 28th against Lexington.
Axtell's Youth Will be a Factor this Season
Axtell had another successful season last year on the court as they finished with a solid re ord of 20-9. Head Coach Brad Nelson will have to fill a number of holes on last year's team but he thinks he has a solid group of players to fill the spots needed. "We have quite a bit of returning experience at key positions, and will have good candidates to fill in the needed areas. I think we will be a very competitive team as the season develops," said Nelson.
Even though the Lady Wildcats will be young, they do bring back five returning letter winners. Camille Fishell (Sr. MH) will lead the way as she had 212 kills and 41 ace blocks last season. The Lady Wildcats will begin the season against Loomis on August 24th.
Lady Knights Return all of Their Starters
Eustis-Farnam struggled last season as they went 3-23. This year, the Lady Knights return all of their starters and look poised to have a good season. Not only do the Lady Knights return their six starters, but they also will have a couple of more players that have playing experience as well.
Head coach, Trista Koch, is looking for her team to use that experience to help with the younger players. "We had a very young team last year, so all of my returning starters are definitely going to be key this year simply because of the experience they gained being thrown onto the varsity court, four of them as freshman. I anticipated this year being better than last with a year of experience under our young team’s belt. I was encouraged even more after seeing them come together at team camp over the summer. It was clear many had been working hard and that hard work had paid off. That type of energy is contagious on the court and makes others want to work harder, too."
Gracie Gibbens (5-5, OH, So.) will be a key player for the Lady Knights this season as she accumulated 78 kills last year. Eustis-Farnam will begin the season on August 30th at the Axtell Triangular.
Lady Eagles Look to Continue Success
Southern Valley had a very successful season last year in which they went 26-6. The Eagles return five starters and inherit Jenny Linden from Ralston. Linden (5-7, OH/L, Jr.) had a very successful season last year as she had 521 digs and 28 ace serves. The other Lady Eagle that will play a key part this season will be Lauryn Samuelson. Samuelson, (6-1, MH, Jr.) had a big year last season as she recorded over 300 kills last season.
Head coach Jessie Thalheim is looking for the talent to really develop this season. "Several of the ladies that we have returning this year also play club ball and get the chance to learn from other coaches and learn to work with other girls; this is going to give us a great deal of tools to use this year as a volleyball team." Thalheim went onto say, " Their energy is high and they are hungry for another chance to make it down to state. The Southern Valley Eagle volleyball team is proud to work hard every day and we know that we have to earn every step so if we plan to make it back down to Lincoln we will be working harder than the last four years combined."
Alma Looks for Depth to be Key this Season
Alma posted an 11-18 record and head coach Marcus Ehrke is wanting to improve you on that. Ehrke thinks though, the depth of his team will help with improvements this season. "The depth of our team will be an advantage during the course of the season, however, our defensive intensity and team chemistry will have to improve in order to end the season where we want."
The Lady Cardinals return six players with starting experience. Tiffany Wells (5-8, MH, Sr.) and Kayla Kindler (5-6, OH, Sr.) will be a pair of athletes to watch for this season. Alma will compete in the RPAC conference again this season.
Bertrand will be Youthful this Season
Entering her 28th season as the head coach at Bertrand this season, Lisa Mason will have a very young team. "We are very young and inexperienced in positions, but hope to progress through
the season," said Mason. But for the Vikings, they return three starters.
Lindsay Shutz, (5-8, OH, Sr.) Grace Schwarz, (5-8, OH, Sr.) and Jada High (5-4, L, Jr.) will anchor the Lady Vikings this season. The Lady Vikings also had four other letter winners that will look to make an impact as well.
Lady Wolves Under Direction of New Coach
Loomis is has a new head coach this season and that is Carrie Trompke. The record from last year's team wasn't great at 5-20, but she inherits five starters and she thinks leadership will be key for this season. "We look for strong leadership from our three seniors and our underclassmen will really push the team to performs at their best. We look to be very competitive in our conference and district this year," said Trompke.
McKayla Meyer, (5-5, Sr.) Alley Beisner, (5-10, Sr.) and Megan Butler (5-5, Sr.) will be the seniors Trompke is referencing for this season. The Loomis Lady Wolves will compete in the FKC conference again this season.
Elwood Lady Pirates Look to Build off of Last Season
Elwood once again had a very solid season last year and look to build off of that. Elwood went 17-11 under the direction of fourth-year head coach, Lori Knoerzer. The Pirates lost some major production from last year's team, but return four starters.
Hadley Martin, (5-7, OH/MH, Jr.) Baylee Diefenbaugh, (5-9, MH, Sr.) Makenzie Clouse, (5-4, MH/OH, Jr.) and Alivia Knoerzer (5-7, S, So.) are the returning starters for the Lady Pirates. Elwood made it to their first state tournament last year and Coach Knoerzer thinks this group will be ready this season. "I am excited about the 2018 Volleyball Season. As a whole, we learned a lot last season and those returning are prepared to put in the work. They know what it takes to be competitive and I believe will push each other to create the best team possible."
Lady Mustangs Return Key Contributors from Last Season
SEM went 9-19 last season as they struggled throughout the year. This season, they return a number of starters including Lindsey Dittmar, Ashley Schroeder, Sarah Glatter, and Faith Whitesel. SEM will also be under the direction of new head coach Tammy Kenton. SEM will open the season against Gibbon on August 23rd.
Experience an Advantage this Season for Lady Swedes
Coming off of a season in which the Gothenburg Lady Swedes finished 22-12, they return five starters from last year's team. Two of those starters Ainsley Rickertson (5-6, S/DS, Sr.) and Lauren Johnson (5-10, OH, Sr.) had really good seasons last year. Rickertson had 45 ace serves and Johnson had 128 kills. Those two will look to be catalysts for this year's team.
Head Coach, Bryson Mahlberg likes the experience and depth of this year's team. "We return a large portion of our team from last year, but we will need to replace a great deal of offensive production. We should be a balanced team this year, with all of the hitters we have the potential to provide a great deal of offensive production. Gothenburg will begin the season on August 30th against Broken Bow.
Elm Creek Looks for Off Season to Payoff This Year
Elm Creek struggled last season as they finished with a record of 11-18. But head coach Brandi McCarter thinks that her squad has put in a lot of work for this season. " I am really looking forward to this upcoming season! These girls put in a great deal of work this summer and have already seen a lot of success through league and team camps. They are ready for the season to start in August," said McCarter. The last couple of years have been rebuilding season and McCarter thinks this team is ready for success. "The past two seasons we’ve been rebuilding and have done that with a tough schedule. So looking at the group we’ve got coming back I think they will be ready to contend this season."
A pair of players for Elm Creek to watch this season are Allison Bauer (5-6, OH, Sr.) and Taylor Moes (5-9, OH, Sr.) Bauer had a season in which she was FKC 2nd team. Elm Creek will begin the season on August 23rd against Amherst.
Lady Whippets fall in state tourney
Minden competed in the C-1 state volleyball tournament on Thursday and the Lady Whippets had to battle a tough Wahoo team. Minden fell to Wahoo three sets to none and the set scores were 25-14, 25-21, and 25-16. For Minden, Jensen Rowse had 13 kills for the Lady Whippets. Minden finishes the season at 23-12.
Southern Valley falls in first round of state tournament
Southern Valley competed in the Nebraska state volleyball tournament on Thursday and the Lady Eagles didn't get the result they wanted. Southern Valley fell to Ceder Catholic three sets to none and the set scores were 25-16, 25-12, and 25-14. The Lady Eagles finish the season with a final record of 26-6.
Lady Vikings fall in state tourney
Bertrand competed in the D-1 state volleyball tournament on Thursday and the Lady Vikings were unable to win. The Lady Vikings fell to Johnson-Brock three sets to none and the set scores were 25-19, 25-9, and 25-17. Bertrand finishes the season with a final record of 20-10.
Hyannis knocks Elwood from state tournament
The Second-seed and 29-1 Hyannis Longhorns had a tough fight on their hands but withstood a strong effort from Elwood to advance with a three sets to one win Thursday at Lincoln Northeast High School.
The first set was an “instant classic” as the Longhorns outlasted the Pirates 28-26 despite a late surge by Elwood and Felicia Knoerzer who had seven kills and a service ace in the set.
The Pirates came back and dominated set two with 25-15 win. Knoerzer again came up big, this time with four service aces and four kills.
The large crowd at the home of the Rockets settled in for another marathon set. Both teams battled back and forth in set three. Typically, only separated by a point our two. Much of the time Elwood had the advantage. Eventually, Hyannis’ Mackenzie Anderson heated up with a block, a service ace and four kills to pace the Longhorns and give them a 29-27 win and a 2-1 set advantage.
Elwood jumped out early in the fourth set, but Jackie Schwaneback and Margaret Sararik were too much for the Pirates as Elwood succumbed 25-21.
Knoezer finished with 22 unofficial kills on the afternoon and six service aces. Elwood finishes the season with a record of 17-14 and their first every trip to state.
Lady Whippets are headed to Lincoln
Minden was the number one seed in their subdistrict, but they knew they would need to win out to make it to state. Minden began their week with a win over Wood River three sets to none and the set scores were 25-21, 25-17, and 25-18. Jensen Rowse led Minden with 19 kills. Minden then took down Kearney Catholic three sets to none and the set scores were 25-10, 25-19, and 25-20. Rowse led Minden again this time with 22 kills. Minden then had to battle Mitchell in sub-state and they took down the Lady Tigers three sets to one and the set scores were 25-17 Minden, 25-19 Mitchell, 25-14 Minden, and 25-13 Minden. Rowse had 22 kills to lead Minden. Minden will battle Wahoo on Thursday at 1:30 pm at Lincoln North Star High.
Holdrege falls to Hastings to end season
Holdrege battled Hastings on postseason play and the Lady Tigers got the better of the Lady Dusters. Hastings took down Holdrege three sets to one and the set scores were 25-20 Hastings, 25-22 Holdrege, 25-14 Hastings, and 25-17 Holdrege. Madyson Hamling led Holdrege with nine kills. Holdrege finishes the season with a record of 6-23.
Cozad finishes the season at 18-12
Cozad had to play in a play-in game to begin subdistrict play last Monday and they were able to take down Hershey in three sets. The set scores were 25-20, 25-11, and 27-25. Cozad then faced the number one seed in the subdistrict, that being Ogallala, and the Lady Haymakers fell three sets to none. The set scores were 25-19 Ogallala, 25-22 Cozad, 25-23 Ogallala, and 25-16 Ogallala. Cozad finished the year at 18-12.
Gothenburg falls in subdistrict final
Gothenburg competed in postseason play last week and they were unable to advance past the subdistrict final. Gothenburg first took down Chase County three sets to one and the set scores were 25-18 Gothenburg, 25-11 Chase County, 25-23 Gothenburg, and 25-18 Gothenburg. Arleigh Costello had 19 kills for Gothenburg. Gothenburg then fell to Ogallala three sets to none and the set scores were 25-16, 25-13, and 25-20. Gracie Stienike had eight kills for Gothenburg. Gothenburg finishes the year at 22-12.
SEM finishes season at 9-19
SEM began postseason play last week and the Lady Mustangs took their first match and then fell in their second one of subdistrict play. SEM first took down Elba three sets to none and the set scores were 25-9, 25-5, and 25-11. Ashley Schroeder had five kills for SEM. SEM then fell to Riverside three sets to none and the set scores were 25-9, 25-12, and 25-23.Erica Eaker led SEM with seven kills. SEM finishes the season at 9-19/
Southern Valley able to make it to Lincoln
Southern Valley began postseason play last week and the Lady Eagles were able to win their way for a spot in the state tournament in Lincoln this weekend. Southern Valley first took down Southwest three sets to none. The set scores were 25-17, 25-17, and 25-19. Cassi Bose led Southern Valley with nine kills. Southern Valley then took down Cambridge three sets to none and the set scores were 25-19, 27-25, and 25-20. Lauryn Samuelson had 12 kills for Southern Valley. The Lady Eagles then took on South Loup in sub-state and won three sets to one and the set scores were 25-21 South Loup, 25-17 Southern Valley, 25-20 Southern Valley, and 26-24 Southern Valley. Samuelson had 26 kills in the match. Southern Valley will be the eight seed and they will take on number one seeded Hartington CC on Thursday at 3:30 pm at Lincoln Southwest High.
Lady Pirates headed to State
Elwood came into the D2-8 subdistrict with a record of 14-13 and weaved their way to the state tournament next weekend. Elwood first took down Loomis three sets to none and the set scores were 25-14, 25-23, and 25-9. Elwood then beat Axtell threes sets to one in the subdistrict final. The set scores were 26-24 Elwood, 25-19 Axtell, 25-17 Elwood, and 25-12 Elwood. The Pirates upset Red Cloud on Thursday night 25-21, 13-25, 21-25, 27-25, 15-8 in the D2-4 District Final. The Pirates were playing in a District Final for a third straight year. Felicia Knoerzer led the Pirates with 26 kills and three ace serves. Hadley Martin added 14 kills. Manon Martin dished out 21 assists for the Pirates who are now 17-13 on the season and will play on Thursday at the state tournament in Lincoln against Hyannis. That match will be carried on KAMI Country Legends 100.1, KAMI 1580 and krvn.com.
Axtell falls in subdistrict final
Axtell began postseason play as they competed in the D2-8 subdistrict. Axtell first took down Wilcox-Hildreth three sets to none and the set scores were 25-20, 25-21, and 25-5. Caitlin Callan led Axtell with 13 kills. Axtell then faced Elwood and lost three sets to one. The set scores were 26-24 Elwood, 25-19 Axtell, 25-17 Elwood, and 25-12 Elwood. Callan had 10 kills as did Madisen Eckhoff had 10 kills also. Axtell finished the season at 20-9.