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Volleyball: Bulldogs cruise past Lakes with sweep

Lake Linden-Hubbell's Brooke Banfield (5) hits the ball as Hancock's Kaydence Kilpela (9) and Isabella Hebert (7) try to block on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020, in Lake Linden, Mich. (Adam Niemi/The Daily Mining Gazette)

LAKE LINDEN — The Hancock Bulldogs had their act together on the volleyball court Tuesday night as they swept the Lake Linden-Hubbell Lakes in straight sets.

The Bulldogs (5-1) won by scores of 25-23, 25-12 and 25-14.

According to the Bulldogs’ head coach Heather L’Esperance, it was one of their best games of the season.

“We had everything going well tonight,” she said. “We had solid passes, solid sets and our hitters were putting it away tonight.”

However, it was not easy to get past a much-improved Lakes team. Their head coach Ellen Jarvis said she thought her girl’s first set was as wellone of the best they had played all year.

“I saw a different team out there tonight. It was team whose passes were awesome, who were communicating and had a lot of energy” she said. “We did make some mistakes but they were few and far between.”

In the first set the Bulldogs pulled out to three or four point lead in the first 10 points. However, the Lakes Camryn Crouchfired up back-to-back aces to tie the game at 12. With Melissa Wagner serving a few volleys later, the Lakes took a 17-15 lead, and their coach called a time out.

“I told them to keep up the good work as we are not our of this one,” Jarvis said.

Hancock came back to make the score 23-22 thanks to a big swing by Kami Klein who had six kills and three aces on the night.

Kami was “unstoppable at the net” said L’Esperance.

“Her serves were phenomenal and she was equally strong in her serve-receive,” L’Esperance said.

The Lakes would get one more, but it would not be enough as the Bulldogs pulled out a 25-23 victory.

The second set looked a lot like the first. There were some great volleys and neither team was going to let the ball drop. The set was tied at seven, eight and nine before the Bulldogs began to pull away. A kill by Tarynn Brey pushed Hancock’s lead to 12-10 and a big swing by Klein made it 17-10. Withpowerful serves flying over the net, the Lakes struggled with serve-receive and fell into a hole that carried over into the third.

While the Lakes dug a 9-5 hole to start the third set, Abby Beaudoin was able to put together a run of three and make it 8-11. However, they just could not keep up with a complete Bulldog performance. Momentum was very much on their side as the third came to a victorious close.

“We played like a team and we won like a team,” said L’Esperance with a smile.

With the win, the Bulldogs move to 5-1 on the year. The Lakes are still looking for their second win of the season.

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