Irish volleyball season ends at state tournament


The Maple Lake Irish volleyball team has played hard all season to achieve their goal of returning to the state tournament. This goal was reached when the Irish defeated Park Center to win the title of 5AA Section Champions. They advanced to state and played at the Xcel Center Nov. 7 and 8.
Once a team is in the tournament they play at least two games because it is double elimination. Maple Lake played its first game against the Kasson-Mantorville Komets. To start game one, the Komets had an early led. They were strong at the net, with hard hits and consistent blocks. The Irish had many great digs but some put Maple Lake out of formation forcing them to pass the ball over the net. Kasson-Mantorville took advantage of the Irish being out of formation and played the ball back quickly and aggressively, scoring enough points to win 25-20.
In game two, Maple Lake had to find different ways to score because their hits were getting blocked. The effort was always present but, because the Irish weren't hitting as often, they were not as aggressive as they could have been. Maple Lake also lost game two 25-17.
The Irish came out strong in game three. Their serves were consistent and strong and the Komets were slowed down and weakened because they weren't as strong of passers. This was an advantage to the Irish and helped them stay ahead for most of the game. Within game three there were long rallies where both teams made some great plays. In the end, the Komets had won more of those long rallies and won the game 25-21.
More information and stats appear in this week's Messenger.