Celebrating the win in game two, in which the Jaguars came back from a 22-17 deficit to win 26-24!
Jenny Hieserich a little excited for the pre-match introductions...More photos will follow on Monday night...I'll add a few more here.
It's time to get some serious journalism done for the newspapers this week.Below are two stories on the Martin County West Mavericks volleyball team:
The stories are pretty interesting, and they give a fair amount of scouting information for fans to check out. Martin County West is a consolidated school formed in 1988... You can read further below on this website to learn more about their school district.
The Mavericks went to the state tournament in volleyball in 1991, the school's only other state berth in volleyball.
"MCW nets sub-section crown"
Charlie Sorrells, Fairmont Sentinel Sports Editor
POSTED: October 31, 2008
NEW ULM - Even with two games in the books and a 20-13 lead in the third contest, Martin County West volleyball mentor Travis Anderson continued to instruct his players Thursday.
"Keep going, keep going, play through to the end," Anderson said as he pointed toward the Martin Luther College court during the Section 2A, South Sub-Section finale's final five points.
Senior middle hitter Kelsey Jensen proceeded to deliver the match's last sideout by blasting home one of Maverick setter Taylor Saxen's match-leading 30 assists.
Saxen then reeled off four unanswered points, with the 6-foot Jensen rejecting a St. Clair spike on match point, to seal the No. 1-seeded Mavericks' 25-19, 25-20, 25-13 sweep over the No. 3-seeded Cyclones.
Martin County West (23-6-1) advances to face North Sub-Section champion Sleepy Eye St. Mary's (21-4-2) for the Section 2A crown at 6 p.m. Saturday at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter.
Sleepy Eye St. Mary's squeezed past defending sectional champion Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop, 26-24, 26-24, 25-23, during Thursday's opening match in New Ulm.
St. Clair ended its season with an 18-9-2 record.
Unlike the two Valley Conference rivals' regular-season clash on Sept. 16, the league champion Mavericks did not need five games to exit the hardwood with the South Sub-Section trophy in hand.
So, what was a key factor during Thursday night's postseason battle?
"This time, our players knew what we could do on our side of the net," Anderson said. "St. Clair's a good volleyball team and gave us a good match tonight, but I think we know ourselves better now than during the middle part of the regular season. That was the real difference tonight."
Trailing 10-6 on the heels of St. Clair's 5-foot-2 serving specialist Kelsi Huxford's three aces from the line, middle hitter Alyssa Taylor displayed her mettle by awaiting a Saxen set to rally Martin County West into the lead.
Taylor, who drilled a match-best 12 kills, then recorded one of her five ace blocks to rotate Paige Breneman to the service line.
Breneman, who connected on 15-for-15 serves, delivered seven key points to swing the momentum and a 19-15 edge to the blue-and-black attack.
Taylor contributed a kill and two rejections during the run, Maggie Prunty nailed one of her five kills and Saxen pounded down a St. Clair overpass.
Outside hitter Madison Bloomquist later collected her only two kills of the opening game, but both came at critical moments as the sophomore spiker chalked up points 24 and 25.
Samantha Breneman jumpstarted the Mavericks' early 4-0 lead in Game 2 from the line before Taylor and Paige Breneman exchanged kills with the Cyclones' Erin Goebel and Nicole Dorn to keep the differential at four down the stretch.
Paige Breneman later unleashed a cross-court court-finding spike off a Saxen assist to close out the middle game at 25-20.
Once again, Jensen produced a timely block to serve as the catalyst behind another Maverick scoring surge during Game 3.
Tied at 8, Jensen's rejection allowed Prunty to reel off back-to-back service aces to propel Martin County West into the lead for good.
Taylor's final kill down the line, off a Saxen set, led to a pair of service aces from Mary Faber to widen the Mavericks' margin to 20-12.
Jensen's final kill one serve later rotated Saxen to the line for the final run.
Prunty was 13-for-13 serving to share scoring honors with Paige Breneman at eight points each. Samantha Breneman was 10 of 11 at the line for seven points, while Saxen was 11-for-11 for six."MCW spikes out section title, state berth"
Charlie Sorrells - Sentinel Sports Editor
POSTED: November 2, 2008
ST. PETER - Martin County West fittingly exited the Lund Arena hardwood court Saturday night with the Section 2 trophy and the volleyball program's second-ever state bid in hand.
Setter Taylor Saxen distributed a match-best 34 assists, while middle hitter Alyssa Taylor produced 14 kills and five ace blocks to stampede the Mavericks to a 25-18, 25-22, 25-20 sweep over the Sleepy Eye St. Mary's Knights during the sectional finals on the Gustavus Adolphus College campus in St. Peter.
"This is the place where it all began for me in this sport. I sat along the sideline in this gym and watched the Mavericks make it to the state tournament for the first time in 1991 when my mom (Garla) was the head coach," said Martin County West head coach Travis Anderson. "Now, 17 years later, I've had the chance to coach this great group of athletes to the state tournament. It's an unbelievable feeling."
Martin County West (24-6-1) opens the Class A state tournament against the third-seeded Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa Jaguars (30-1) at 3 p.m. Thursday at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
The Jaguars, who finished the regular season ranked No. 5 in the Class A state poll, defeated Nevis for the Section 5 championship, 25-12, 26-24, 25-22.
Sleepy Eye St. Mary's ended its season with a 21-5-2 record.
While Saxen did her usual outstanding job of distributing precision sets to the blue-and-black's balanced five-hitter attack, the Mavericks' elbow-scraping defense aptly lowered its digging skills to a new level to frustrate the Knight spikers.
Trailing 15-12 in the opening game, St. Mary's converted Madeline Schmitz's defensive gem on a Martin County West overpass into a key sideout.
Cortnie Wahl then delivered three more points from the service line to swing a 16-15 lead to the green-and-white clad visitors on the scoreboard.
Travis Anderson, however, called timeout and his words during the short recess refocused the Mavericks' vision of a sectional crown.
Kelsey Jensen produced an echoing block to trip the defensive switch for Martin County West before libero Samantha Breneman stepped to the line.
Breneman, who connected on 15 of 15 serves, unleashed Game 1's five final points to shift the momentum in the Mavericks' direction.
Taylor opened the mini-run with a hard spike off a Saxen loft before Paige Breneman quick-wristed back-to-back cross-court stingers to pace the eventual 25-18 win.
Middle hitter Crissi Schewe, who topped all frontline players with 15 kills, quickly regained the momentum for St. Mary's in Game 2 before another Martin County West defensive highlight stemmed the tide.
Sarah Ludewig's crunched kill off a Nevada Helget backset, combined with Schmitz's block, staked the Knights to a 5-1 edge before Taylor's block stymied the run.
Paige Breneman then reeled off seven straight service points to build a 9-5 Maverick margin, with Maggie Prunty pounding down three kills to ignite the scoring surge.
Ludewig's three-point service stint later knotted the game at 11, but Prunty's turn at the line proved productive for MCW.
Jensen smacked down a Knight overpass to trigger Prunty's four-point run to extend the gap to 18-12 before St. Mary's assembled a solid comeback to retake the lead.
Schewe blasted a hard shot to force a double-hit call before unleashing four kills during teammate Jenny Rothmeier's eight-point service run.
Defense, however, proved the Mavericks' momentum-changing forte.
"Our blocking and digging really got us back into the second game," said Anderson. "I thought Madison (Bloomquist) really came up with some nice passes off of a number of great digs in Game 2."
Bloomquist, along with Samantha Breneman, guarded the lines by bumping a number of hard hits to Saxen to fuel Breneman's ensuing five-point service run.
Jensen's timely block supplied the vital sideout at 21-19 before Breneman inched the Mavericks with one point of a two-game lead at 24-21.
Schewe's give-and-go kill combination with Nevada Helget stopped Breneman's run before the Saxen-to-Taylor tandem put an exclamation mark on Point 25.
Tessa Bergemann gave Martin County West a bit of breathing room during the latter stages of Game 3, lining home a pair of points for an 18-13 edge. Taylor registered a block before drilling a Saxen set for a kill, but Wahl countered for St. Mary's.
Nevada Helget evened the score at 18, but the Knights could not sustain the comeback as Taylor converted a Saxen quick set and a regular loft to sandwich Schewe's sideout rejection.
A lift infraction on the Knights proved costly as 22-20 as Mary Faber stepped to the line for the Mavericks and delivered the match's final three points.
Prunty uncorked a floor-finding block, St. Mary's nicked the antenna on an ensuing pass and Jensen hammered home the match-sealing kill off a Saxen set to propel Martin County West to the state tournament.
Prunty supplied six kills to the Mavericks' balanced attack, Jensen notched five kills and five ace blocks, while Bloomquist and Paige Breneman each chipped in five kills.
Nevada Helget doled out 23 set assists for the Knights, while Ludewig and Rothmeier contributed four kills each.
Ticket prices are $12 for adults and $8 for students for a single session at the Class A state volleyball tournament at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
A daily pass, which is good for all sessions that day, is $18 for adults and $13 for students.
There will be no advance ticket sales, so all tickets will have to be purchased at the event.
A charter fan bus will be offered Thursday and Friday. The cost is $23 and does not include the price of admission.
Departure time is 10:45 a.m. from Trimont, 11 a.m. from Sherburn and 11:15 a.m. from Welcome on Thursday.
Deadline for signing up at Martin County West High School is 10 a.m. Wednesday. Payment must be received before boarding the bus on Thursday. Checks can be made to Martin County West. A minimum of 40 passengers is needed to offer the charter bus.
A send-off pepfest is set for 2:15 p.m. Wednesday at the high school gym. The event is open to the public.
Martin County West schools will not be in session Thursday and Friday.