Volleyball: Baraga sweeps Lake Linden
BARAGA — Despite being away from the volleyball court for two weeks due to a COVID-19 quarantine in the Baraga School District, the Vikings looked pretty good on Thursday night, said coach Corey Pietila.
“It has been a struggle to get into a rhythm with the start of stop of this season,” she said. “However, the girls are dealing with it and are just excited to be playing.”
The Vikings shut out the Lake Linden-Hubbell Lakes with scores of 25-19, 25-21 and 25-21.
It was a back-and-forth battle to start off the night.
The two teams locked in at four, six and seven before Baraga began to pull away with sophomore Kylie Michaelson at the service line. She kept the Lakes dancing with her power serve. The Lakes struggled setting up an offensive attack, and she moved her team’s lead up to five.
That lead gap remained until the Lakes’ Abby Beaudoin put a run of four together and move her team within two at 18-16. Kills from Lakes seniors Melissa Wagner and Selina Koskiniemi helped the team during the run.
However, Lake Linden never got closer as Baraga’s Jenna Maki stepped up to the line and put the score at 23-16. The Vikings won the first set 25-19.
“Serving is our strong suit,” Pietila. “We work at it and we have some good hitters.”
On the other side of the net, LL-H coach Ellen Jarvis thought the first set was the Lakes best of the night.
“There towards the middle of the first set we were able to set up some plays,” she said. ” We moved the ball well. Our struggle is consistency. We will get the ball and hit it into the net or out of bounds.”
The Lakes gave up 12 points on the night with service errors. As well, the Lakes gave up nine dropped balls.
“The girls have to talk better,” Jarvis said. “It is something we continue to work on.”
As the second set got under way, the Lakes led for the first time on the night at 6-5. The rivals tied five separate times. However, errors came back to haunt the Lakes and never scored another point.
“Volleyball is such a momentum game,” Jarvis said. “We’ll get going on a good run and then we do a 180. The girls get down and don’t play together. We tend to beat ourselves.”
Baraga’s Lynn Lauristen kicked off the third set with a run of four to make the score 6-3. However, the Lakes Brooke Banfield was ready to even the score. She moved the Lakes up from a five-point deficit to a two point one at 16-14. It didn’t last long though. The Vikings Reide Osterman found Lake Linden’s soft spot and pushed the lead up to six at 21-15. While Wagner helped the Lakes move within three at 21-24 it was too little too late.
With the win, Pietila noted the impressive play of Corina Jahfetson and senior Haley Robillard.
“Corina has such a strong swing and Haley is strong all over,” she said. “The two work very hard in practice and are good examples to the team.” With the victory, the Vikings more to 5-1 on the season.