Following a second regional title in the last four years and with a bevy of returnees back from last season, hopes are high for the Reedsburg prep volleyball team this fall.
The Beavers wasted little time showing they could be as good as advertised Tuesday as they rolled to a three-set sweep over Mt. Horeb in a Badger West Conference match at Mt. Horeb. Seniors Macie and Mahra Wieman had 16 and 11 kills, respectively, while McKenna Oetzman dished out 16 assists as the Beavers pillaged the Vikings in their first match in the newly configured Badger West — the Badger Conference as a whole shifted away from its traditional North/South configuration to a new East/West realignment this year.
“I was pleased with the overall play I saw on the court from our players last night. We were scrappy, played some pretty good defense, and passed the ball fairly well off of serve receive and free ball opportunities,” Reedsburg coach Sheila Green said.
“I like the way we are playing this early in the season. Obviously we have things to work on. I’d like our blocking to tighten up and be more consistent in our hitting, but overall a good start to the season.”
That good start was met with an early challenge as the teams’ were neck-and-neck throughout the first set with neither team leading by more than two. That was until Reedsburg stretched its lead to 21-17 before finishing things out, 25-20.
That momentum carried into the second set as the Beavers bolted out to a 12-3 lead early on and never saw the lead get under five from there. The Vikings tried to get over the hump twice, pulling within 15-10 and later 21-16, but a 4-0 run by Reedsburg squashed any rally attempt with a 21-16 win.
The Beavers again ultimately pulled away in the third, but not without a counterpunch by the Vikings. After Reedsburg stretched its lead to 20-13, Mt. Horeb answered with a 5-0 run to claw within 20-18, but it never got closer as the Beavers pulled away for a 25-20 win to polish off the sweep.
Senior Ella Halvensleben had a team-high 19 digs, while junior Cate Cherney added two aces and Macie Wieman notched a solo block. The Beavers return to action Thursday with a non-conference tilt against Mauston before hosting a Badger West North Division quad against Baraboo, Portage and Sauk Prairie next Tuesday.