Mid Pen tops Big Bay
ST. NICHOLAS — Solid serving helped propel the Mid Peninsula Wolverines to a 3-0 (25-12, 25-14, 25-18) win on Senior and Parent Night in St. Nicholas over the Big Bay de Noc Black Bears Tuesday night.
Mid Pen had a total of 30 aces in the three sets, with Jopsie Hemminger accounting for 11 of those, while Kora Prater had seven — which came in the span of eight straight serves — and Maddie VanDamme six.
“Everyone served well from the service line tonight for us and tonight was our last home game for our seniors, so it was nice for them to get a final win on their home court one last time,” said Mid Pen coach Emily Kayser. “It was just a solid team effort again. The girls are distributing the ball around nicely, and everyone is just doing their roles nicely before going into districts. So, we’d like to keep it going.”
Kayser added that the team working as they are now helps keep the momentum rolling and spirits high.
“It just helps our morale and team chemistry,” she said. “If we keep the team chemistry going on strong, I think we’ll do very well at districts this year.”
Landry Koski had seven kills and three blocks on the night for the Wolverines, while Shae Lampinen had 10 assists and Prater 12 digs. VanDamme also had nine digs for Mid Pen.
“Landry is always a force at the net for us. She always puts on a good display,” Kayser said. “Kora Prater, our libero, had some awesome passes for us to get our setters going.
“That was Josie’s best service display, tonight. I’m very proud of that. The younger classmen are stepping up into their positions, and the seniors are leading in their roles. That’s all I can ask for. I can’t complain about anything.”
Though the Black Bears improved throughout the net, as evidenced by the set scores, communication errors played a big part in the loss said coach Angie Paulse.
“Our biggest issue was communication right off that bat,” Paulsen said. “And we harp on that over and over again. But, it seems to be one of our biggest issues year after year after year. Part of it is these girls have played together the last few years, so I think they kind of feel like, ‘we kind of know how the other ones going to play’ so all the fundamental stuff can take the backseat. But, clearly, that doesn’t work out as we saw tonight.”
The Black Bears made some changes — primarily moving Piper jones from her normal setter position to a hitter spot while bringing in Tatum Harvey was brought up from JV for the night and put in as a setter — in the third set.
“Their communication got better. They were hitting the floor for the digs that were coming quick. It was like the fear went out the window in that third set,” said Paulsen. “But, it still took them a little while to get there.”
Mid Pen plays Thursday against the Eagles in Stephenson, while the Black Bears take a long break before the Northern Lights League tournament on Oct. 29.