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Rebels win thriller against Randolph

Down Rockets 3-2, but come up short against the Hayfield Vikings

By Chuck Hunt - Editor | Oct 3, 2021

Outside hitter Kyllah Curry goes up for a kill during a recent match played in the Rebel gymnasium.

Despite playing well, the United South Central Rebel girls volleyball team lost 3-0 to Hayfield on Tuesday night, Sept. 28. The scores were 25-21, 25-14, 26-24.

“We played some good volleyball tonight,” coach Joe Kuechenmeister said. “If you look at the scores, minus the second set, we were right there throughout the majority of the match. That said, we struggled with the intangibles tonight. Our energy wasn’t where it needed to be, our communication wasn’t as strong as it’s been, and thus we didn’t have the intensity needed to pull through in the two close sets that we had.”

Melany Ehlert led the team in kills with eight. She also had six digs, one block and one assist.

Kyllah Curry added six kills, along with seven digs and two blocks. Kendal Harpestad had five kills and 12 digs.

“I credit Molly Wegner for coming in and setting a pretty good match,” the coach added. “There are some things we’re going to need to work with her on, as far as gelling with her hitters now that Sam is done for the year, but she’s adjusting nicely.”

Wegner came in and had 19 set assists, along with four digs and one ace.

Hannah Meyer added one kill for the team along with one dig. Leah Winch had 10 digs and Erica Johannsen added one dig and one ace.

“As a team I thought we passed the ball well overall, also,” the coach explained. “Kiera Schultz put together her best night from the back row and that was nice to see after some struggles earlier in the season. Shows that she’s growing up and getting more comfortable on the varsity floor.”

Schultz had two kills, eight digs, one block and one ace.

“Overall, not a bad performance,” Kuechenmeister said. “But we need to do a better job with the intangibles going forward if we want to compete with quality teams in the Gopher Conference.”

USC 3, Randolph 2

The United South Central Rebel girls volleyball team fought hard in another long, five set match, and came out on top of Randolph by a score of 3-2, on Thursday, Sept. 23..

“These kids sure like going down to the wire,” coach Joe Kuechenmeister said. “I think they like it a bit more than their coach does! Another back and forth match, and we were able to come through in the clutch after denying Randolph a couple of match points.”

Scores of the five sets were 25-27, 26-24, 25-19, 23-25, 20-18.

“Throughout the match, we struggled with piecing a lot of early point errors together, such as missed serves, shanked serve receive, etc.” the coach explained. “We cleaned that up a bit in the middle of the match to get to 2-1, but our inconsistency allowed Randolph to take set four. We got to a big lead in set five, and were able to hold off a huge rally that saw us down multiple match points yet again.”

Kiera Schultz and Kendal Harpestad each had 14 kills to lead the Rebels. Schultz also had two digs, three blocks and one ace, while Harpestad had 13 digs, one block and one ace.

Kyllah Curry had 11 kills, 14 digs and one ace and Melany Ehlert added 10 kills, 13 digs and one ace.

Sam Swanson had 42 set assists, seven kills, 11 digs, one block and three aces.

Hannah Meyer added two kills, one dig and one block, while Leah Winch added 14 digs and Eirka Johannsen added one dig and one ace.

“When you’re a team that hasn’t won much in the last couple of years, learning to close out a match in these moments is big,” coach Kuechenmeister said. “I’m proud of the guts the girls showed again tonight, and we’ll work to clean up some of our sloppy areas prior to our tournament this weekend.”

The Rebels are now 2-6, 1-4 in the Gopher Conference. The Rebels traveled to Nicollet for a tournament on Saturday, Oct. 2.