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Copper Kings shut down Purple Hornets

October 12, 2012
By Brandon Veale - DMG Sports Editor ( , The Daily Mining Gazette

CALUMET - There's still a lot of work to do, but Calumet kept getting it done Thursday.

The Copper Kings, now 33-4 overall and ranked No. 3 in the state in Class C by the Michigan Interscholastic Volleyball Coaches Association, took down L'Anse with ease Thursday, 3-0 (25-9, 25-16, 25-19).

"I am happy with their work ethic in practice and their determination every time they step on the court," coach Lisa Twardzik.

They added domination to that determination from the get-go Thursday.

"Their hitters, just very powerful," L'Anse coach Jen Wilson said. "Much quicker hitters than anything we've seen all year."

Calumet expanded its lead to 7-2 with help from one of Molly Loukus' six aces and one of five blocks from Ellen Twardzik. L'Anse hung around in the first set at 13-7 before Calumet delivered a crushing blow: Eight straight point from the serve of Grace Hyrkas for a 21-7 lead. Loukus threw in another ace on set point to make it 1-0.

"After that first game, I just told them I know you're better than the score's showing right now," Wilson said.

Indeed, the Purple Hornets were more competitive in the following sets. Calumet's longest run of the second was just four point sand didn't come until the end when it was 18-13. But the most L'Anse strung together was three, and the Copper Kings put together four in a row on Kayleen Anderson's serve, then three more on the next rotation to end it.

Calumet got off to another solid start in the third, with four points from Terra Erkkila's serve (including back-to-back Twardzik blocks) and five from Loukus' serve (including back-to-back aces) for an early 9-1 lead. L'Anse fought back to 23-19, but Lexie Rowe delivered a thundering crosscourt kill for the sideout and Anderson finished it off with an ace.

All in a day's work for a potent Calumet offense.

"We were passing the ball well, stayed in system and our attack percentages, wow," coach Twardzik said of the first set. "Everybody hit over .300."

Attack percentage is kills minus errors divided by total attacks.

Three Kings had seven kills apiece: Twardzik, Rowe and Kristy Lasanen. Alisa Storm added four. Anderson passed out 25 assists.

Defensively, Erkkila delievered a team-best 11 digs.

For L'Anse, Amanda Dufek had a team-high five digs, while Rebecca Hulkonen (five kills) and Heather McCarthy (16 assists) led the Hornets in their respective categories.

Calumet joins the rest of Houghton County at the Houghton Invitational Saturday morning, while L'Anse is off until a home triangular with Baraga and West Iron County next Thursday.

Calumet won both the freshman and JV matches.



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