Vikings sweep Brandywine, Dowagiac in triangular match
Published 5:51 am Wednesday, October 5, 2016
NILES — The Niles volleyball team played the rude host in a tri match against crosstown rival Brandywine and Dowagiac.
The Vikings dominated the Bobcats and Chieftains, winning 25-15 and 25-9 against Brandywine and 25-15 and 25-16 against Dowagiac.
The Vikings came into the night focused and prepared, but still looking to improve their play.
“We wanted to make sure that we are at the same intensity every set, no matter what,” Niles coach Jenny Nate said. “It’s a big week and we want to make sure we treat every opponent the same, and make sure we are working on what we need to have every single day.”
After the Vikings swept the Bobcats in the first round of the night, the second match between Brandywine and Dowagiac was a bit closer.
The Bobcats and Chieftains were more evenly matched and it showed on the scoreboard as the Chieftains won two close matches, 25-21 and 25-18.
“We were looking for passion and hard driven girls that want to go fight for a ball and execute a play,” Dowagiac coach Rachel Zeider said. “It happened a few times, but I could see they definitely tried to do everything they could.”
“It’s fun to have that crosstown competition with Niles,” Brandywine coach Carrie Bidwell said. “Not to take anything away from Niles, because they are playing really well this year, but we didn’t play our best tonight.”
The last match of the night paired the Vikings with the Chieftains, and while Dowagiac had its moments, the Vikings had too many hitters for the Chieftains to defend.
“The nice thing about this team is every hitter can hit, every girl can pass, every girl can serve,” Nate said. “As long as they can hit their spots, stay with the fundamentals, get low, take the pass, put it in Carly’s hands, our hitters can put it away.”
The Vikings host Portage Central in a key SMAC match tonight. Niles and the Mustangs are set to square off at 6:30 p.m. in a battle for first place.
Brandywine travels to Comstock for a 7 p.m. BCS Athletic Conference match today, while Dowagiac returns to the court Thursday to take on host Sturgis in a Wolverine Conference contest.
Niles d. Brandywine 25-15, 25-9.
Dowagiac d. Brandywine 25-21, 25-18.
Niles d. Dowagiac 25-15, 25-16.
Niles individual statistics
Carly Barton 17 points, 2 aces.
Bella Rasler 11 points, 4 aces.
Lexi Smith 10 points, 3 aces.
Nola Wallace 5.
Megan Kohler 2.
Abbie Harpenau 2.
Dowagiac individual statistics
Kassidy Binns 33 assists, 4 aces.
Natalie Davis 34 digs, 2 aces.
Taylor Hulett 11 kills, 2 Aces.
Arianna Carnessalli 6 kills.
Shelby Jackson 13 digs.
Brandywine individual statistics
Grace Polomcak 4, Audrey Longley 3, Olivia Whitney 3.
Polomcak 16, Rachel Laurita 10, Whitney 10.
Olivia Thomas 3.