The Portage volleyball team has had its trials and tribulations throughout this season, often struggling to maintain momentum when it was able to generate some.
The Warriors failed to do that once again at Saturday’s Badger North Conference, as they were held winless at the Badger North Conference tournament in Reedsburg. After going 0-3 in pool play, the Warriors battled but lost in three sets to Sauk Prairie in the seventh-place match.
Portage got off to a great start, taking the opening set over the Eagles, 25-21. The Warriors failed to build on that, however, as they faded away in a 25-13 second-set loss before falling 15-12 in the third set.
Juniors Katelyn Belleau and McKena Yelk each had five kills in the loss, while Belleau added 11 assists and eight digs, and Yelk had one block and one ace each.
Aside from the three-set loss to the Eagles, the Warriors’ best performance came in their pool play opener against Reedsburg. Portage hung tough against the host Beavers, but ultimately fell in straight sets, 25-17, 25-17.
Again Belleau and Yelk led the charge, as Yelk notched a team-high four kills, while the former had 10 digs and eight assists.
The Warriors didn’t make much noise over their next two matches, as they didn’t generate much offense in losses to Waunakee and rival Baraboo. Against Waunakee, who went on to win the tournament title, Portage struggled offensively in a 25-10, 25-9 loss.
Things didn’t get much better against the Thunderbirds, as Baraboo rolled to a 25-4, 25-12 win. Juniors Anna Kratz and Gabrielle Garrigan each had two kills against Waunakee, while Kratz added two digs and an ace.
Against the T-Birds, Belleau and junior Abby Leeland each had three assists, while Yelk had three kills and Kratz had 10 digs. Portage will look to get into the win column Tuesday when it travels to Plainfield Tri-County before returning home to take on Monona Grove in the Badger Challenge on Thursday.
Reedsburg 25, Portage 17
Portage 17 17
Reedsburg 25 25
PORTAGE (leaders): Kills — McKena Yelk 4. Blocks — Yelk, Katelyn Belleau 1. Digs — Belleau 10. Assists — Belleau 8.
Waunakee 25, Portage 9
Waunakee 25 25
Portage 10 9
PORTAGE (leaders): Kills — Gabrielle Garrigan, Anna Kratz 2. Digs — Yelk, A. Kratz, Belleau 2. Aces — A. Kratz 1. Assists — Belleau 4.
Baraboo 25, Portage 12
Portage 4 12
Baraboo 25 25
PORTAGE (leaders): Kills — Yelk 3. Blocks — Belleau 1. Digs — A. Kratz 10. Aces — Belleau, Garrigan 1. Assists — Belleau, Abby Leeland 3.
Sauk Prairie 15, Portage 12
Sauk Prairie 21 25 15
Portage 21 13 12
PORTAGE (leaders): Kills — Belleau, Yelk 5. Blocks — Yelk, Hillary Nelson 1. Digs — Belleau 8, Garrigan 7. Aces — Yelk, A. Kratz, Leeland 1. Assists — Belleau 11.