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Volleyball: Osakis advances in playoffs after home victory

Madisen Johanson (right) celebrates with her teammates after a kill. Osakis beat Browerville in four sets. (Emily Myrin / Echo Press)1 / 6
Madisen Johanson (left) and Tianna Stanek go up for a block in their game against Browerville. (Emily Myrin / Echo Press)2 / 6
Emma Johnson calls for the ball in the Osakis opener of the playoffs. Johnson had 15 digs on the night. (Emily Myrin / Echo Press) 3 / 6
Setter Morgan Faber sets sophomore Madisen Johanson up for a hit. Johanson had four kills on the night. (Emily Myrin / Echo Press)4 / 6
The Osakis volleyball team beat Browerville-Eagle Valley in the first round of the playoffs. The Silverstreaks play Swanville next. (Emily Myrin / Echo Press)5 / 6
Tianna Stanek goes in for the kill covered by her teammates. Stanek had 10 kills on the night. (Emily Myrin / Echo Press)6 / 6

The Osakis volleyball team was confident going into its home match against the Browerville-Eagle Valley Tigers.

Even with the pressure of the Section 5, Class A opener on the night, the Silverstreaks knew they had beaten the Tigers twice before in the season, and their confidence was warranted. The Silverstreaks secured another playoff game with a four set win over the Tigers.

“I think it helps to be confident,” Osakis coach Kirsten Wessel. “I’ve never said this to the girls because we’ve never had this situation but it’s hard to beat a team three times. Browerville is coming in with nothing to lose.”

While their confidence paid off, it wasn’t always easy for the Silverstreaks. It was a two or three point game most of the night.

It was close down to the fourth set when it was 24-24 when Osakis called a timeout. The Silverstreaks were either going to win, or the Tigers were going to push it to five sets.

When the Silverstreaks came back on the court, senior Bobbi Jo Alverson clinched the game for Osakis with two consecutive kills.

“It feels good,” Alverson said. “It definitely took the rest of the team to pass it up and set me up those last two kills. It wasn’t just me. I think that energy behind me helps so much.”

Osakis took the first set 25-20. The Tigers pushed back and won the second set 25-22. A strong 25-16 win for the Silverstreaks led into the match-winning fourth set.

“We worked together really well,” Wessel said. “I mean, there were times when we didn’t in games two and four even, but we seemed to pick it back up in game four. Games one and three, unstoppable defense. And I thought our hitters were making really good choices.”

Senior Harlie Falzone and junior Tianna Stanek each had 16 digs to lead the defense. Emma Johnson followed with 15 digs and Morgan Faber had 10. Alverson had a team-leading 11 kills on the night followed by Stanek with 10. They served at a 95.9 percent.

“It’s getting sad coming to the end of my year but I know that with this team we can do it,” Alverson said. “We’re not underdogs. If we continue to push through, continue to get these wins, if we continue to be a team as one and don’t play for ourselves.”

The Silverstreaks head to Swanville Friday night for the second round of the playoffs. Osakis split two matches with the Bulldogs (13-10) during the regular season, with both matches going five sets.

“This is a good warm up game for us,” Wessel said. “If we can block like that it’ll be an amazing game because they have some bigger girls, good hitters, athletic girls. If we can get in their heads or at least slow down their hits, that really takes a hitter out of their game and that’s going to help out a ton.”

This win makes Osakis’ overall season record 10-17.

“I think that we put a lot of heart into this game so that we can move forward into tomorrow,” Stanek said.

Osakis plays in Swanville on Friday at 7 p.m.

OSAKIS 3, BROWERVILLE 1OSAKIS TOTALS - Alverson - 11 kills, 7 digs; Bree Timmerman - 2 aces, 1 kill, 6 digs; Cynthia VanAcker - 8 kills, 5 blocks; Ellie Clasemann - 1 kill, 9 assists, 9 digs; Emma Johnson - 15 digs; Falzone - 16 digs; Jacey Larson - 1 dig; Kylie Anderson - 1 assist, 3 digs; Maddie Johanson - 4 kills, 1 block, 2 assists, 2 digs; Megan Peikert - 1 ace, 9 digs; Faber - 1 ace, 4 kills, 14 assists, 10 digs; Sam Bray - 1 kill; Stankey - 1 ace, 10 kills, 2 blocks, 1 assist, 16 digs
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