Seventh ranked Buchanan sweeps Brandywine

Published 11:02 pm Thursday, September 8, 2016

The red hot Buchanan Bucks, ranked No. 7 in Class B, traveled to rival Brandywine for a BCS conference volleyball matchup Wednesday night.

The Bucks would make it a quick night, winning in straight sets 25-11, 25-20 and 25-9.

Both teams had to battle not only each other, but also the heat and humidity of a gymnasium without air conditioning.

“I felt like, considering these kids sat in a non-air conditioned school all day and then had to come in here and play, they did a good job of staying focused and running our offense,” Buchanan coach Lisa Holok said. “I thought everyone played really well, but you could tell the heat was a factor.”

Despite losing three straight sets, Brandywine had some positive moments during the match.

“I was very impressed by our level of play,” Brandywine coach Carrie Bidwell said. “We had a great run, especially in that second game. We ran our offense, especially against a very aggressive offense in return, and we had to play good defense and to be able to run offense when you’re playing great defense means we were doing something right.”

The play of Liz Kuntz provided a much needed spark for the Bucks in game two. With the score tied 20-20, her defense helped Buchanan to score the last six points of the match.

“I thought Liz Kuntz did an amazing job all three games,” Holok said. “She did a really nice job with her position, and helping the team get some extra energy, and she came up with some nice blocks at the end of game two.”

Statistically, the Bucks were led by Franki Strefling with 12 kills, Alex Tobler with 11 and Kuntz with 7.  Kuntz also contributed 7 blocks. Taylor Strauss led the team with 14 digs, Britta Mollberg 12, Taylor Reed 11, and Strefling had 10.

One of the bright spots for the Bobcats on the night was the play of Grace Polomcak. While she chipped in four kills, three aces, and eight digs, she appeared to be in the right place at the right time more times than not.

“I am so impressed with Grace (Polomcak),” Kidwell said. “Grace really had to step up for us tonight and she did. She played middle tonight, she played outside, she played all the way around and I’m really proud of how well she played tonight.”

Makenna Bowen led the Bobcats with five kills, while Audrey Longley had 16 assists and nine digs. Mia Stella also contributed eight digs, while Olivia Thomas pitched in with three blocks.
The Bobcats (2-5) will use the rest of the week to prepare for BCS conference foe Bridgman, who they play Wednesday, while the Bucks (15-1) will use the next couple of days to prepare for a tournament at Battle Creek Lakeview on Saturday.



At Brandywine High School

Set scores

Buchanan d. Brandywine 25-11 25-9 25-21


Buchanan individual statistics

Franki Strefling 10 digs 12 kills 1 block.

Anna Tobler 2 digs.

Taylor Reed 11 digs.

Taylor Strauss 2 aces 14 digs.

Megan Adkerson 1 dig 4 kills.

Andrea Bair 1 kill 1 block.

Ali McClaran 1 dig.

Britta Mollberg 3 aces 12 digs 4 kills 38 assists 1 block.

Liz Kuntz 7 blocks 7 kills.

Alex Tobler 1 ace 4 digs 11 kills.


Brandywine individual statistics


Makena Bowen 5, Grace Polomcak 4.


Audrey Longley 16.


Polomcak 3.


Longley 9, Mia Stella 8, Polomcak 8.


Olivia Thomas 3.

Varsity records: Buchanan 15-1, Brandywine 2-4.