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Malm, White, E-Hawks—It’s All Good

October 26, 2018
By Darren Fraser , Emmetsburg News

by Darren Fraser

Molly Schany took her game to another level in Emmetsburg's victory over Sioux Central in the opening round of Class 2A Region 1 play but it is doubtful the E-Hawks would be moving on if not for the exemplary play of juniors Heidi Malm and Logan White.

Schany played on another planet in the fifth and deciding set. The formula was Macy McAllister set and Schany spike. This made the score 3-0, 4-0, 6-1, 7-1, 12-2, 13-2 and 14-2. Just to shake up things, Schany used a touch shot to close out the match.

Article Photos

The squad is in position to return a serve.

Set five was a blow out; the match was something entirely different. In set one, the Rebels took a 4-1 lead. Emmetsburg rallied behind spikes by Gretchen Hofstad and Abbie Schany. The E-Hawks knotted the score at 10-10 and pulled ahead at 13-12. With the score 17-14, the Rebels took a time out. Sioux Central crept back, pulling within one at 18-17. Emmetsburg's play on both sides of the net was stellar, forcing the Rebels to take another timeout at 23-20. The Rebels could not close the gap, though; the E-Hawks took set one 25-22.

With Malm serving, Emmetsburg took the early lead in set two. The E-Hawks had the homecourt mojo working after Raegan Swanson roofed to make the lead 5-4. In a reversal from set one, Sioux Central clawed its way back. Sophomores Taylor Krager and Madelyn Mueller were Kaijus at the net; each racked up 13 kills in the match. The Rebels' defense was formidable, repeatedly blocking Schany's blasts. Sioux Central tied the set at 10 and were up 15-12, forcing Coach Birkey to call time out. After a Schany spike nearly decapitated a Rebel, making the score 18-17 for Sioux, Coach Sara Grossnickle was forced to take a timeout to settle her squad.

When play resumed, Sioux Central played tenacious defense, contesting every point and refusing to relinquish the lead. Despite a well-timed finesse shot by Abbie Schany and a timely dig y Hofstad, Emmetsburg could not close the gap. The Rebels took set two 25-21.

Malm's service game befuddled the Rebels all match. The junior was an astounding 29 for 29 in serves. While Malm kept Sioux Central on its heels, White joined forces with the usual suspects at net beat back Krager, Mueller, et al. The junior also delivered the numbers on offense, with seven kills on 13 attempts. White had some key digs and energized the squad. Malm and White shone in set three. White delivered a spike to put the E-Hawks up 8-7. The scored remained close. McAllister spiked to make the lead 15-14. McAllister's hustle kept the score 17-17. White delivered another spike to make the lead 18-17. With Malm serving, the E-Hawks pulled away. Emmetsburg went up 21-17 following a White roof. Malm did not falter and despite a few late-set hiccups, the E-Hawks took the set 25-20 on a Schany elder spike.

Neither team quit. In set four, Swanson made two remarkable digs on one point. Senior Molly McCain briefly spelled Schany elder and made the most of her time off the bench, going five for five in serves. The E-Hawks relied on too many push shots in set four. The Rebels had 169 kill attempts for the match and succeeded in 45; whenever Emmetsburg pushed the ball over, Krager and company pounced.

The marquee play of the game occurred with the score 16-15 in the Rebels' favor. The point turned into a protracted rally; each team chased down each shot, played balls off the net and refused to budge. Emmetsburg eventually won the battle but lost the war. With the set knotted 21-21, Krager delivered a monstrous spike to put the Rebels ahead. Schany elder evened the score with a timely dink but had an uncharacteristic mishit on the ensuing point. Following an E-Hawks' timeout, Sioux Central inched ahead 24-22. The Rebels simply would not be denied, taking the set 25-22.

Set five was quickly decided. Emmetsburg went up 5-0. In addition to Schany elder's relentless arsenal, the team played superb net defense. Sioux Central only managed two points, losing the set 15-2 and the match.

The E-Hawks won behind Birkey's coaching, team defense and communication. Throughout the season, Emmetsburg prevailed when players talked to each. Of course, it didn't hurt that Schany elder notched 30 kills on an unheard of 82 attack attempts or that the match could have been title Macy McAllister Assists Day as the sophomore doled out 47.

The match was a team effort from start to finish. Hofstad had 17 digs; Swanson had 14. Savannah Wolf delivered when the team needed her to; the E-Hawks' deadliest server went 24 for 26. As always, junior Morgan Jamison was everywhere at the net and on the floor.



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