Wildcat VB improves to 4-1 in WCC

Junior Kia Pankey digs the ball during the Wildcats’ Sept. 19 match against Holy Family. The Wildcats won 3-0.
Junior Kia Pankey digs the ball during the Wildcats’ Sept. 19 match against Holy Family. The Wildcats won 3-0.

It was a solid week for the Waconia volleyball team, as the Wildcats picked up a Wright County Conference win over Holy Family (improving the ‘Cats to 4-1 in the WCC). Waconia also had a 3-1 record in weekend tournament play in Apple Valley.

Waconia 3, Holy Family 0

Hosting Holy Family on Sept. 19, the Wildcats quickly put out the Fire 25-13, 25-14, and 25-16. Head coach Jim Lee said the ‘Cats came out with high energy and were ready to play.

Aces abounded for WHS, as senior Sam Paulson (3), junior Anna Schmitt (4), and junior Jessica Wolf (3) all served multiple aces.

Kills were evenly distributed among the WHS hitters, including Wolf (11), junior Jenna Van De Velde (10), senior Kirsten Wagener (7), and sophomore Mikayla Williams (7). Schmitt had 35 assists on the night.

Apple Valley Tournament

Traveling to the Eagle Invitational on Sept. 20-21, the ‘Cats began the weekend by facing off against Lakeville North, a team that is ranked No. 4 in Class AAA by the coaches’ association. Lakeville North made quick work of the ‘Cats in a 19-25, 18-25 match.

“Effective hitting didn’t match the results,” Lee said of the match.

Wolf led the team with 11 kills, while Schmitt led the team in assists (24). Paulson (12) and Schmitt (9) topped the digs list for WHS.

Bemidji was the next team slated to face Waconia, and after losing the first set 25-27, the ‘Cats rallied to win the next two 25-17 and 25-11 for the overall 2-1 win.

“A loud, tall Bemidji team provided a good test for us offensively,” Lee said.

Wolf (13), Wagener (10), and Van De Velde (9) split most of the kills for WHS, while Paulson (15) and junior Kia Pankey (13) kept the back line guarded with a collective 28 digs. Schmitt had 36 assists.

Section competitor Shakopee was the next team to fall to the Wildcats as Waconia topped the Sabers 25-23 and 15-11 in sets one and three. Shakopee won set two 25-19.

Wolf (12 kills) and Williams (9) led the Wildcats offensively, while Paulson (12 digs) and Pankey (10) kept the defense in check.

In their final match of the tournament, the Wildcats lost the first set 24-26 in their match against Alexandria. But a 25-21 win in set two spurred WHS to a 20-18 win in set three for the victory.

“Had to fight to end the tournament on a high note as Alex provided an energetic spark, a plus of a team as competition,” Lee said.

Wolf had 15 kills against Alexandria.

Next week, the Wildcats will host Dassel-Cokato on Oct. 1 and will also host a fundraiser that same night for tragedies and struggles that affect both teams and communities.


Contact Melissa Marohl at [email protected]