A trip north to Apple Valley gave the Caledonia volleyball team some good game-experience against several quality teams over the weekend.
The Warriors placed sixth in the 16-team tournament, picking up wins over Centennial and Saint Francis while dropping matches to Cretin-Durham-Hall and Stewartville.
Coach Scott Koepke said, “Overall it was a really fun weekend and the girls learned a great deal. Several things we will use to our advantage as we move through our season. We learned how important it is to play quick at the net, the value of staying neutral and balanced and keeping the ball in play and making our opponents earn all their points.”
The Warriors beat Centennial 25-23, 25-14 and lost to Cretin-Durham Hall 23-25, 14-25.
“They had a very nice team. They served well, attacked well and played tough defense,” Koepke said. Lottie Augedahl served seven straight points to get to 23-24 in set one. Caledonia beat St. Francis 25-20, 31-29
“A strong attacking team… We had to play very well to get through this match,” Koepke said
The Warriors then fell to Stewartville 20-25, 28-26, 12-15. “They girls really played some strong volleyball in this match. We had one little stretch in set one, after leading most of the set, where we didn’t play as efficient as the rest of the set. They also had some very strong serving in the match,” the coach said.
Koepke recognized the play of Augedahl, saying, “She really did a great job working to get every ball up so the attackers could get a swing. I was very proud of her for doing such a great job at such a tough position to play she doesn’t normally play.”
Hitters Emma Lange and Maria Fruechte both played well with Lange hitting at a .256 clip with 19 blocks, while Fruechte hit .258 with 13 blocks.
Koepke said, “Each one of them had some awesome swings and blocks – just very fun to watch. They both were swinging against two and sometimes three blockers. Lauren Rusert and Lexie Bearbower both picked up their defense and grew as defenders learning to stay neutral and dig the ball in that posture.
“Lydia DeMorett and Emily Ranzenberger really did some real nice serving Saturday helping with many of our points.”
Caledonia will be back in action Sept. 13 with a trip to St. Charles.
– Brady Ambrose