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The edge that Craig Krull's Squaws took to Bishop Dwenger Tuesday was definitely not present last night as the defending 3A state champs had their home opener, taking out Woodlan with a less-than-spectacular showing, 25-12, 25-15, and 25-15.
"We didn't seem to have a whole lot of energy. I think we were caught off guard because the jayvee match lasted about a half hour and we were still in the locker room, so we got off to a slow start," explained Krull.
The brief jayvee match went 25-4, 25-6 to Bellmont. The varsity match might have gone that way, but the Squaws were lethargic on defense, knowing that eventually the Warriors would just beat themselves.
Defensively, we were just slow tonight. You play sometimes to the level of your opponent. Woodlan didn't bring a whole lot of energy either. I told the girls after the match that we have to bring our own energy, especially here at home.
"But a win is win. Later we'll talk about but right now we'll take the win."
Senior Payton Schultz had her way in the middle, posting 13 kills with a block assist. She had two aces. Sophomore Holly Hankenson ruled from the right side, posting 9 kills, then adding four digs. Bailee Hankenson had five kills with two block assists, and she led the team with 18 assists.
"Payton did a nice job when we had her in the middle, and Holly had a nice night hitting from the outside. We're still working on her arm strength, but she did a great job," praised Coach Krull.
Senior Steph Shoup had 15 assists, five digs and two kills while frosh Janaya Wilder added two kills and three digs. Libero Allison Gutierrez added nine digs. Senior Erin Hunter put down a pair of aces to go with six digs and a kill.
Sarah Norder recorded three kills for Bellmont, adding a solo block. Senior Melissa Mailand played in the final game, netting three kills in seven attempts.
"It was nice to get Melissa in there to try out the ankle. She said she was ready to go, and we should see her in there,," stated Krull, noting that Mailand has missed a week with a sprained ankle.
"She came out and played well for the limited work that she's had."
Bonetrager had five kills for Woodlan and A. Pier 3. Price recorded nine digs.
In the jayvee rout, Audrey Schultz and Emily Roman both had two kills for BHS while Madalyn Mann recorded three assists and had two block kills. Autumn Konkle loaded three aces with four assists and a kill. Jessah Okoniewski had an ace and two digs and Olivia Fuelling four aces and two digs.
Natalie Busse recorded an ace and a kill and Taylor Rhymer had a dig and a kill.
Both Bellmont squads are 2-0.
The Squaws will host Adams Central Saturday night.