Vikings win home opener against Shamrocks
NILES — For the second time this season, the Niles varsity volleyball team went from practicing on the sand to playing in a gym Wednesday night.
Last week, the Vikings traveled to South Bend St. Joseph to open its 2020 season, swept visiting Berrien Springs in its first BCS Athletic Conference match 3-0. Niles defeated the Shamrocks 25-20, 25-17 and 25-14.
Veteran Niles coach Jenny Nate was pleased with the way her team has responded to switching back and forth.
“The Niles varsity volleyball team walked right off the sand court less than 24 hours ago and right on to the indoor court, masks on, to host and sweep Berrien Springs in its first BCS Conference match of the season, and their first official day allowed in their own gym,” she said. “We knew we would have a lot of adjustments to make switching from playing in the sand to indoor.”
Nate was able to play all 15 members of her roster against Berrien Springs. She could do that because of the effort her squad has put into preparing for the season.
Jillian Bruckner had a big night for the Vikings with a team-high 10 kills, two service points and a block. Marika Ruppart added eight kills and two blocks, while Cadence Knight finished with four points, an ace and a team-high 12 digs.
Anna Johnson led Niles with nine points and two aces, while Emma Beckman had a team-high 11 assists to go along with 10 digs.
Niles is back in action on Saturday as it heads to Otsego for a quad.
COMSTOCK — Brandywine also recorded a sweep in its BCS Athletic Conference match against host Comstock Wednesday night.
The Bobcats, playing their first match of the 2020 season, defeated the Colts 25-11, 25-18 and 25-18.
Kristen Alvord led Brandywine with seven kills and two aces, while Kadence Brumitt added four kills and five aces. Haley Scott finished the match with five kills, two blocks and two aces.
SOUTH HAVEN — Visiting Dowagiac dropped a pair of matches at South Haven Wednesday night.
The host Rams defeated the Chieftains 25-10 and 25-18, while Bangor topped Dowagiac 25-15, 20-25 and 15-10.
Caleigh Wimberly led Dowagiac with five kills and 14 digs. The Chieftains also got five kills and six digs from Megan Davis, while Jessie Hulett had 13 assists, six digs and two aces. Allie Connor led the Chieftains with 16 digs.