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Knights battle back B-E

The Chargers’ Emma Friedrich had nine kills against WCA Tuesday night. (Echo Press photo by Blaze Fugina)

A match-up between two area teams needed five sets before West Central Area came away with a 3-2 win over the Brandon-Evansville volleyball team on Tuesday night.

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The Knights and Chargers went back and forth with WCA winning 25-22 and 25-21 in the first and third sets. Brandon-Evansville answered with 25-13 and 25-14 wins in the second and fourth sets before the Knights secured the win in a 15-13 fifth set.

“We had far too many ups and downs tonight and overall it was an off night for us as a team performance,” WCA head coach Beth Hill said. “That being said, it is pretty good to get a nice section win like this on an off night.  Set five was pretty solid and we played well, forcing them to make mistakes.  The main point from all this is that we battled through a tough night and finished.  I am really proud of them for that.”

Holly Van Kempen and Tiana Christenson were instrumental in helping the Knights to the win. They each had 14 kills with Christenson adding 28 digs and Van Kempen chipping in four blocks. Christina Kruize ran the offense with 33 assists to go with two ace serves, two solo blocks and seven digs. Doranna Blascyk also had eight kills for the Knights.

“It is always tough to lose a close match, but it also gives you a chance to focus on a few issues and start taking a closer look at them,” Brandon-Evansville head coach Kelly Olson said. “I thought WCA came here tonight and played how I thought they would. They scrambled and dove and hustled. They played very hard. In the end that was enough.”

Senior setter Kinsley Randt had 42 assists on a night when she was recognized for recording her 1,000 career assist.

 “I can say our players played very well for a couple of sets, and times during the other three, but that is not enough,” Olson said. “On a night where Kinsley Randt was recognized for her 1000th set assist, I hoped we would have more focus. It is not that we played awful. We just didn’t do the little things well enough to win.”

Caroline Jansen had 19 kills to lead the way for the Chargers up front. Emma Friedrich had nine kills. Mariah Hansen also added nine kills and a team-high 25 digs, while Tony Wright and Diane Campbell finished with six kills apiece.

It wasn’t quite enough as the Knights moved to 11-6 overall and to 6-0 against Section 6A opponents. The Chargers fell to 15-9-2 overall heading into a big match-up with Battle Lake last night, Thursday. Both the Battlers and Chargers had just one loss in Little Eight Conference play going into the night as they got set to battle for the top spot in the league.

The Chargers kept pace with Battle Lake by beating Rothsay 25-13, 25-12 and 25-19 last Thursday night.

The Chargers had five players pick up all 33 of their kills. Hansen had nine of those, while Jansen and Friedrich each added eight. Randt and Campbell each had four. Randt also finished with 25 assists.

“Toni Wright probably had her best night as a player tonight,” Olson said. “She served 20 balls tonight with no errors and three aces. I think we are starting to see that as important as kills are, that serving, digging, blocking and passing are just as, if not more, important.”


WCA 3, Brandon-Evansville 2

(25-22, 13-25, 25-21, 14-25, 15-13)

BRANDON-EVANSVILLE – Hansen – 9 kills, 2 aces, 25 digs, 2 blocks; Randt – 4 kills, 42 assists, 4 aces, 12 digs; Jansen – 19 kills, 1 ace, 2 digs; Emma Friedrich – 9 kills, 1 ace, 12 digs, 3 blocks; Kylee Hansen – 1 kill, 9 digs; Campbell – 6 kills, 3 digs, 1 block; Megan Kokett – 2 aces, 21 digs; Wright – 6 kills, 4 aces, 3 digs, 1 block

WCA – Van Kempen – 14 kills, 8 digs, 4 blocks, 1 ace; Christenson – 14 kills, 28 digs, 2 aces, 2 blocks; Kruize – 33 assists, 2 aces, 2 blocks, 7 digs; Blascyk – 10 digs, 8 kills; Jordan Anderson – 2 digs, 2 kills, 2 blocks; Courtney Lock – 8 digs, 2 aces, 1 kill; Alysa Aanerud – 1 dig, 2 kills, 2 blocks; Kiersten Sabolik – 9 digs, 1 ace

Brandon-Evansville 3, Rothsay 0

(25-13, 25-12, 25-19)

BRANDON-EVANSVILLE – Hansen – 9 kills, 2 assists, 2 aces, 11 digs, 4 blocks; Randt – 4 kills, 25 assists, 6 digs; Jansen – 8 kills, 2 digs; Friedrich – 8 kills, 3 aces, 7 digs, 1 block; Kylee Hansen – 5 digs; Campbell – 4 kills, 3 digs; Megan Kokett – 1 ace, 12 digs; Katie Kokett – 2 aces, 4 digs; Wright – 3 aces, 6 digs

Eric Morken

Eric Morken is the sports and outdoor editor at the Echo Press and Osakis Review newspapers in Douglas County, MN. Follow him on Twitter at echo_sports.

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