Area Teams Take Part in Early Season Invites
After a 15-0 conference championship season last year, the Peshtigo Bulldogs volleyball team looks to keep things heading in the right direction. The first area of concern for Robin Gilligan's 2016 season is how to replace the MVP of the conference, Teja Tonn, the Defensive Specialist of the Year, Amanda Majewski, and an honorable mention middle hitter, Megan Enderby.
"Good question. They aren't going to be replaceable but there are players in other positions coming back that I believe will step up to the challenge and do a great job. We also have a few players that are really coming around and have worked hard during the summer on the middle hitter position in particular," Gilligan said.
Peshtigo has plenty of experienced players coming back as well including a first team all-conference setter, Ashley Dudka, and their two starting outside hitters in Claire Neumann and Shae Tonn. Four senior players will also look to make a contribution including Megan Behnke, Jenna Thill, Grace Johnson and Joni Polzin, to go along with juniors Emma Frederickson and Madi Martin.
"I am very glad to have Ashley (Dudka) back. She's like the glue of the team and it makes things easier when you have a setter that can put the ball where each individual hitter needs it. The girls really respect her and enjoy having her as a setter," Gilligan said as she spoke of the importance of having experienced players returning.
The Bulldogs hard work throughout the summer and beginning of the season was on display Tuesday as they faced off against Coleman, Shiocton and the host Blue Devils in Oconto.
The Peshtigo Bulldogs then traveled to Oconto Tuesday night for the Oconto Invitational to take on Oconto, Valders, Coleman, and Shiocton. Peshtigo's hard work during the summer paid off as they went 4-0 on the day to take first place at the invite.
The Bulldogs swept every team they faced, but it wasn't always easy. As Peshtigo took on the host Oconto, the Bulldogs pulled off a narrow victory 26-24 before winning the second set 25-18. In match two Peshtigo took on Valders and won 25-17 and 25-14 in straight sets.
In match three a battle of two M&O teams took place as Peshtigo took on the Coleman Cougars. In the first meeting of two M&O powers, Peshtigo swept the match 25-13 and 25-19. The Bulldogs continued their momentum against Shiocton with a sweep 25-8 and 25-19.
Peshtigo's Claire Neumann recorded 4 services aces, 16 kills, 2 assists and 15 digs. Ashley Dudka piled up 39 assists, 12 digs, 6 kills, 2 blocks and 2 aces. Shae Tonn led the team in kills with 17, added 14 digs, 9 aces and 3 assists.
Shawano Takes First
at Crivitz Invite
The Shawano Hawk varsity volleyball team took first place at the season opening nine team Crivitz Invitational Tuesday, besting Mercer who placed second and third place Marinette.
Crivitz secured fourth place while Three lakes was fifth.
Talor Long led the Wolverine girl with 18 kills, four aces, one dig, one assist and one block. Abby Barley got seven kills, three aces, six digs, three assist and one block while Virginia Popp struck for seven kills, four aces and a dig.
The St. Thomas Aquinas Academy played host to the Menominee Maroons Tuesday night. Menominee won the match in three straight sets, 25-17, 26-24 and 25-19.
Menominee was down 23-10 in the second set before Slyvie Sartorelli served 13 points straight to tie the game at 23-23, the Maroons went on to win the set 26-24.
Corrina Anderson and Jennifer Woods recorded 8 kills each for Menominee to lead the team while Sartorelli and Woods each had 5 aces. Karley Plutchak added 9 assists for the Maroons as well.
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