Opening Statement 31 Aug 11

Gabby Thomas

BELLE PLAINE – Belle Plaine gets the first one. That’s how it went Tuesday night as the Belle Plaine volleyball team defeated LeSueur-Henderson 25-20, 26-24, 22-25, 25-21. For the first game of the season the matchup had a buzz in the air with over 10 former volleyball players from both teams and over 300 people in the gym. This wasn’t a football game it was volleyball in the Minnesota River Conference that had #2AA LeSueur-Henderson taking on #4 Belle Plaine.

The match would start with both teams trading points and leads until Belle Plaine would go on a 4-0 run to take a 18-12 lead. LSH Coach Dave Nixon would take a timeout to settle his inexperienced team and it would work as they went on a 7-2 run to trim the lead to 20-19, this time forcing Belle Plaine coach Cassie Wolpern to call a timeout. Belle Plaine would respond with kills from Haley Fogarty and missed passes from LSH to win 25-20 to take the first game.

Game two would start close until Belle Plaine went on a 10-2 run to lead 16-9 and would hold their big lead at 21-14 before another timeout from LSH would spur the team on. The Giants would go on a 8-1 run to tie the match at 22-22 and the team would trade off points until they were at 24-24. Then a big service error from Gretta Schultz would give Belle Plaine a chance to win game two and would put down a quick kill for the win and the dominant two games to none lead.

LeSueur-Henderson would come out and dominate game three with their lead never getting less than three until Belle Plaine made it 23-21 in favor of LSH. The Giants would go side out volleyball to pick up the game and force game four.

Game four would have the same feel as one and two as the Tigers would jump out to a big lead of 12-6 and hold off LSH immediate charge and lead 21-15 before LSH made one last push. The Giants would go on a 6-2 run to make the score 23-21 Belle Plaine before the Tigers got the final two points to seal the season opening victory.

In the match both teams served aggresively and saw many players use the jump serve. LeSueur-Henderson had 14 service errors (including 5 in the game four) to Belle Plaine 8 service errors.

Belle Plaine improves to 1-0 on the season and will host Mankato East on Tuesday, September 6th at 7:15pm. LeSueur-Henderson will host Section 2AA-rival Blue Earth Area on Thursday, September 1st at 7:30pm.