MUNISING - The Manistique Emeralds made their volleyball opener a successful one Saturday as they captured the Munising Invitational title by topping Ishpeming in three sets, taking the deciding game 15-12.
"It was a tough match," said Emeralds' coach Amy Nixon. "It was back and forth the whole time. This really means a lot to our program. The history of Manistique volleyball hadn't been real strong until the past couple seasons. This sets the bar high for us."
The Emeralds split with Superior Central and beat Gwinn, Engadine and Mid Peninsula in pool play before taking Newberry in two sets in the semifinals.
Manistique's Monica Giles, Kelsy Gonyea and Cayla Strasser were named to the all-tournament team.
"There were other players on the team who also contributed," said Nixon.
The Emeralds face Ishpeming again at home on Wednesday.
Superior Central topped Mid Pen (21-7, 21-7) and split with Gwinn (21-15, 19-21) and Engadine (21-17, 22-24) in pool play and bowed to Ishpeming (21-17, 21-13) in the semifinals.
"We had a pretty good day," said Superior Central coach Kris Bray. "We were actually ahead of Manistique in the second set, then we ran into a pretty good server. We played well until the semifinals. I think the girls got tired in the end."
Lindsey Richmond hit 27 service points, including 10 aces, for the Cougars who had only seven available players. She also had 31 assists.
"Lindsey did a nice job serving," said Bray. "Otherwise, our serving was maybe one of our weak points, which I didn't expect."
Kelsey Coleman led at the net with 13 kills and seven blocks. Mikayla Barrows added 14 kills
Defensively, the Cougars were led by Vanessa Freberg's 18 digs. Teslyn Tyner had 11.
"Teslyn and Vanessa did a real nice job digging in the back row," said Bray. "Although, we need to finetune our overall coverage on defense. We need to be more aggressive. We were a little overly cautious in tight matches.
The Cougars, who return to Munising for a dual match Aug. 28, played without Brooke Pasanen and Brianna Emard. Pasanen has a broken finger on her right hand and Emard is battling knee problems.
Besides falling to Manistique and Superior Central, Mid Pen split with Engadine (21-18, 13-21) and bowed to Gwinn.
The Wolverines were missing Krysta VanDamme and Crystal Hadel due to previous commitments and Elle Lancour was attending her brother's wedding.
"We were excited about splitting with Engadine," said Mid Pen coach Traci Lyle. "We had mostly jayvees playing and tried different people in different situations. We had a chance to work out the bugs a little and a couple sophomores stepped up."
Hunter Branstrom had all of Mid Pen's blocks. Christina Nelson also shined for the Wolverines, who visit Carney-Nadeau tonight.
"Christina was quick," said Lyle. "She was all over the court. We're looking for good things from her."
Superior Central - Richmond (27 points, 10 aces, four kills, one block, 31 assists, seven digs); Coleman (15 points, five aces, 13 kills, seven blocks, three assists, seven digs); Tyner (12 points, eight aces, five kills, four blocks, one assist, 11 digs); Freberg (nine points, two aces, nine kills, two blocks, one assist, 18 digs); Barrows (five points, 14 kills, two assists, three digs).