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Volleyball roundup: Brandon-Evansville, Minnewaska earn sweeps; WCA falls to Sauk Centre

Brandon-Evansville and Minnewaska earned 3-0 wins on Thursday, while West Central Area lost to Sauk Centre, one of the top teams in Class AA.

Skylar Bitzan and EmmaLee Brethorst-DSC_4994.JPG
B-E's Skylar Bitzan (left) and EmmaLee Brethorst (right) block a shot during the third set of a match against Henning on Sept. 20, 2022. B-E improved to 7-6 with a win over Battle Lake on Sept. 22, 2022.
Sam Stuve / Alexandria Echo Press
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The Brandon-Evansville volleyball team found itself back in the win column on Thursday with a 3-0 victory over Battle Lake (2-9, 1-7 Section 6A).

“Anytime you go on the road, the atmosphere can sometimes dictate the energy you play with,” B-E head coach Kelly Olson said. “With more kids getting a chance on the court, it was great to see us fight through and come out with the win. I thought everyone that played contributed in a positive way and we worked together.”

B-E (7-6, 5-5 Section 6A) started off the night with a set one win, 25-22.

“Winning 25-22 was great, but we were a little flat,” Olson said. “Battle Lake passed the ball really well that first set and we had some serving issues that killed any momentum we gathered.”

The Chargers won set two 25-11 and set three 25-19.

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“Set two was much better from the serving line and with a few tweaks in our lineup we got the momentum and never let it go,” Olson said. “It showed the players that serving the ball in can not only keep pressure on the other team, but keep the focus on the things we can control that help us be successful.”

B-E is on the road again on Monday at 7:30 p.m. against New York Mills (8-3, 2-2 Section 6A).

Brandon-Evansville - 25 25 25 - 3

Battle Lake - 22 11 19 - 0 

Sauk Centre moves to 14-2

The Sauk Centre Mainstreeters, who are ranked No. 6 in the Class AA QRF rankings on Minnesota-scores.net, improved to 14-2 (8-0 West Central Conference) with a 3-0 sweep over the West Central Area Knights (9-3, 5-3 WCC).

“We started off a little slow and we found ourselves clawing our way back into the match late,” WCA head coach Melissa Foslien said.

1 Whitney Westrom Mya Foslien DSC_5115.JPG
West Central Area's Whitney Westrom, left, and Mya Foslien put up a block against Brandon-Evansville during the 2021 season. With a 3-0 loss to Sauk Centre on Sept. 22, 2022, WCA is now 9-3 so far this season.
Eric Morken / Alexandria Echo Press

Sauk Centre won set one 25-22, set two 25-18, and set three 25-19.

“We made a great effort. Our girls didn’t give up, and we had some momentum going into set two,” Foslien said. “We made some great defensive plays and forced them to make the errors. We hit the ball aggressively, but in the end it’s hard to beat height, not that it’s impossible, and our team knows they could do it, we just came up short each set.”

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Mya Foslien led the Knights in kills with 11, while Addison Staples had nine.

“Whitney Westrom and Mya Foslien had an excellent night serve receiving,” Melissa Foslien said. “Mya and Addison Staples also were aggressive hitting on the outside.”

Macy Grosz had 26 assists and 11 digs. Mya Foslien had a team-high 13 digs.

The Knights return home for their next three matches, first facing Morris Area/Chokio-Alberta on Sept. 29, at 7:30 p.m.

West Central Area - 22 18 19 - 0

Sauk Centre - 25 25 25 - 3

WEST CENTRAL AREA STATS - Macy Grosz, 26 assists, 11 digs; Mya Foslien, 13 digs, 11 kills, 1 block; Whitney Westrom, 11 digs, 5 kills; Madelyn Westrom - 8 digs, 2 kills, 1 block; Izzy Puchalski, 3 digs, 2 kills, 1 block; Addison Staples, 1 ace, 5 digs, 9 kills; Sophie Sanstead, 4 kills; Alaina Sykora, 3 kills

Minnewaska sweeps Benson

The Minnewaska Lakers earned their fifth win of the season on Thursday with a convincing 3-0 win over Benson (25-22, 25-13, 25-12) on the road.

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Dreya Barsness led the way for the Lakers with 18 kills. Avery Fier reached double figures as well with 10 kills.

Haley Shea had 28 assists for the Lakers, while Haillie Schultz led the team in digs with 10.

Minnewaska (5-6, Class AA) hits the road again on Sept. 29, at BOLD (10-1, Class A).

Minnewaska - 25 25 25 - 3

Benson - 22 13 12 - 0 

MINNEWASKA STATS - Avery Fier, 10 kills, 8 digs, 1 block; Brooklyn Meyer, 2 digs; Dacia Fleury, 3 kills, 2 assists, 9 digs, 1 block; Dreya Barsness, 18 kills, 2 aces, 1 assist, 8 digs; Hallie Schultz, 3 kills, 1 assist, 1 ace, 10 digs; Haley Shea, 2 kills, 1 ace, 7 digs, 1 block; Maya Guggisberg, 4 kills, 1 dig, 1 block

Volleyball scores from Sept. 22

(Stats not yet available)

Alexandria (6-3) 3, Fergus Falls (3-9) 0
Hancock 3, Ashby 0 (1-10)
Osakis (3-11) 3, Upsala 0
Underwood (7-4) 3, Parkers Prairie (4-2) 1

Sam Stuve covers a variety of sports in the Douglas County area. He also is assigned to do some news stories as well.
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