Vermillion volleyball squad faces 16-team field at Mitchell Invitational

Vermillion volleyball squad faces 16-team field at Mitchell Invitational by Jim Prosser The Vermillion Tanager volleyball team joined in a 16- team invitational tournament Friday and Saturday, Jan. 26-27 at Mitchell.

The schools were assigned to one of four pools, each consisting of four teams: Pool A (SF Washington, Brookings, Pierre, and RC Central); Pool B (SF Lincoln, Aberdeen Central, Philip, and RC Stevens); Pool C (Brandon Valley, Mitchell, Spearfish, and Yankton); and Pool D (SF O�Gorman, Huron, Sturgis, and Vermillion).

The Tanagers lost to Sturgis 15-11, 10-15, 15-7 in the first match on Jan. 26.

The Tanagers� assist leader was Elly Kjose with 24. She also had seven digs. Ashley Bjorkman had eight kills, fourblocks (three solos), 3 service points, one ace, and 10 digs. Leslie Larson had four blocks (three solos), nine kills, 9 service points, and three digs.

Carey Engstrom contributed nine digs, four kills, 7 service points, two aces, and one block. Jaclyn Powell had one block, two assists, three kills, and nine digs, and Nikki Mollet was credited with two kills and two blocks. Tessa Tuetken had 5 service points, one ace, one kill and six digs.

Saturday�s match #2 in pool D was a three-game affair against SF O�Gorman. The Tanagers fell 7-15, 15-6, 13-15 (rally scoring).

Defensive blocks leader was Mollet with six (two solos) and she also led with 11 kills. Kjose scored the most assists with 23 and had 7 service points, one ace, two digs, one kill, and two blocks.

Powell had one ace, 2 service points, six digs, three blocks (two solos) and three kills. Larson scored five kills, four aces, two blocks (one solo) and two digs.

Bjorkman had five kills and seven digs. Engstrom had 7 service points, one ace, seven digs and one block. Allison Stewart scored 9 service points, one ace, and three digs while Tuetken registered two kills, 3 service points, one ace, and one dig.

Match #3 paired Vermillion with Huron in Pool D and the Tanagers battled in another marathon three games to reverse their fortunes 15-8, 10-15, 15-9 (rally) to win their first match in the tourney.

Larson scored 13 service points, and added three aces, five digs, two kills, and seven blocks (three solos) to lead the team.

Powell had 5 service points, two blocks, one assist, two kills and five digs. Bjorkman had six kills and 3 service points, five blocks (two solo) and nine digs. Kjose recorded 16 assists, 5 service points, two aces, seven digs, and one kill.

Mollet led the defense with seven kills and four blocks (three solos) along with Engstrom with eight digs and seven service points. Tuetken had one kill and two aces.

This brought the team to an 11th place tourney finish against Pool C representative Brandon Valley in a two game, relaxing 15-6, 15-10 victory. The leader in assists was again Kjose with seven. She also recorded two blocks and four digs. Bjorkman had 5 service points, five digs, four assists and three kills.

Powell had four digs and also had two assists, 8 service points and two aces. Larson had nine blocks (six solos). Engstrom contributed 13 service points, three aces, three blocks, three kills, and six digs.

Mollet added one dig and two kills along with Stewart, who had 2 service points and and one dig.

The tournament losses and wins brings the season record to a fine 17-6-2.

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