Oelke injured; BEA loses to Marshall
It was a pretty rough night for the Blue Earth Area Buccaneer volleyball team last Tuesday.
The Bucs did end up taking second in the Big South Conference championship match, but that meant they had lost to the Marshall Tigers who claimed the championship with a 3-0 sweep of the Bucs.
The Bucs started the night by losing one of their key players, Maddi Oelke, to injury in the first game.
“It is tough when a player goes down in the first set,” Buc coach Donna Nawrocki said. “The girls fought through the adversity and continued to battle, however.”
It was an uphill battle, however, as the Bucs lost 25-9, 25-9, 25-22 to the Class AA No. 2 state ranked Tigers.
BEA could never get on track in the first game. They trailed Marshall by 23-6, before trying a brief rally, scoring three points and making it 23-9.
After falling behind 4-0 in game two, the Bucs rallied and got within one point at 7-6. But, they could muster just two more points before the Tigers ended it at the same score as the first game, 25-9.
Game three was different from those first two. BEA actually started off leading 5-1. They also led 8-6 before Marshall rattled off four straight points for a 10-8 lead. BEA kept hanging around as Marshall tried to put the match away. The Bucs trailed 17-11 then 22-14 before pulling off a big rally. The maroon and gold got as close as 24-22 before Marshall closed out the game and match with one more point.
The Bucs were led by senior Sofie Blair added seven kills and 10 digs and two ace blocks and was also 15 of 16 from the serving line with two ace serves and 10 service points.
Fellow senior Lindsey Norman had eight kills, nine digs and one ace block.
Hailey Meyers and Samantha Naumann each had six digs.
The only sophomore on the team, Kiera Osmundson, came off the bench and was 6 of 6 serving with an ace serve and three service points.
“I’m proud of the fight in them and against a very good No. 2 AA ranked team in Marshall,” coach Nawrocki said. “We were very happy to be playing in the BSC Championship.”
The Buccaneers will warm up for post-season play by competing in the Rochester Tournament this past Friday and Saturday, Oct. 20-21.
Section 2AA Tournament action will get under way on Thursday, Oct. 26, when the South No. 3 seeded Bucs (15-10) host the No. 6 seeded Maple River Eagles (13-12) at 7 p.m. in the Buccaneer gym.
The winner of that match will take on the winner of the No. 2 seed St. Peter Saints and the No. 7 seed Fairmont Cardinals on Halloween Night, Tuesday, Oct. 31 at 7:15 at Mankato East High School.