The Crusader volleyball team played eight matches last week, emerging 5-3. The team is 12-5 overall and is currently second in the Minnesota River Conference with a 3-0 record. They trail No. 4 (2A) Belle Plaine, who is 5-0 in the MRC, 14-3 overall.
Mayer 3, Maple Lake 0
At Maple Lake on Sept. 18, Mayer Lutheran won all three sets: 25-13, 25-16, and 25-21. Head coach Joelle Grimsley said it was a great game by the Crusaders, who worked hard to run an effective offense at a quick pace. Maple Lake’s scrappy defense forced the Crusaders to work all their hitters, but a good Mayer Lutheran focus allowed for the win.
Serving was 62-71 with nine aces. There were 39 kills in 87 attempts, as well as 24 digs, 37 set assists, and three blocks. Junior Rachel Schmidt led the Crusader offense for the night, with five digs, 14 kills, and seven aces, while serving 20-21. Other strong kill leaders included senior Nico Schmidt (9), senior Kristen Mielke (7), sophomore Maria Kuntz (6), and senior Ashlyn Hucky (2). Kuntz had one block and was 8-8 serving. Senior Emma Christopherson served 6-6 with one ace. Hucky had 35 set assists, while Nico Schmidt was 9-11 serving with five digs. Mielke was also credited with a block.
Mayer 3, LeSueur 1
It took four sets to defeat LeSueur-Henderson on Sept. 20, but the Crusaders took down the No. 6 (2A) Giants 25-21, 18-25, 25-18, and 25-23. Grimsley said the gym was full of energy against the Giants, and both teams came ready to play.
The team was 77-89 serving, with strong nights from Nico Schmidt (7-8), Hucky (15-18), Rachel Schmidt (9-13, 2 aces), junior Lauren Schroeder (19-22), and Kuntz (13-13). Kill leaders included Nico Schmidt (23), Rachel Schmidt (10), Mielke (10), Hucky (5), and senior Christina Bruggman (2). Digs came from Nico Schmidt (8), Rachel Schmidt (6), Hucky (3), and Schroeder (2). Mielke and Bruggman each had three blocks, while Hucky had 37, of the team’s 41, assists.
Class A showcase
Competing in the Class A showcase in Burnsville on Sept. 21-22, the Crusaders finishing 3-3 at the tournament, good enough for fifth place. They defeated Upsala, Nevis, and Win-E-Mac, while also losing a match to Win-E-Mac, Lake of the Woods, and Southwest Christian.