By Brenda Erdahl, Sports Editor
The Maple Lake volleyball team’s successful season last fall has drawn attention at the national level.
Earlier this winter senior player Linsey Rachel was named to the Maxpreps Medium School All-American 2nd Team and head coach Marty Kiebel was selected as the MaxPreps Medium School Coach of the Year.
Rachel was among 17 players from around the country selected for the second team.
“It’s quite an honor and certainly one that a Maple Lake player has never received,” coach Kiebel said.
The 36-0 Irish cruised through the state tournament in early November with a flawless, nine-set run, defeating Kenyon- Wanamingo, Academy of Holy Angels and North Branch 3-0 to win their second consecutive Class AA state title.
Among their leaders was All- American Linsey Rachel who was also a Ms. Baden Volleyball finalist and State AA Player of the Year.
MaxPreps described Rachel as “key to Maple Lake’s state title and unbeaten (32-0) season. Though her stats were modest in comparison to some, she averaged 3.7 kills, 3.8 serve receptions, and 3.0 digs per set. Rachel is also an All-State softball player.”
Rachel has played volleyball for the Irish varsity team since the eighth grade. She has been all-state since her freshmen year and went to state four out of the five year’s she’s played varsity ball.
“I didn’t expect it at all,” Rachel said of the national honor. “It was a good surprise.”
Rachel will go on to play Division 2 Volleyball at St. Cloud State University this fall with a volleyball and academic scholarship.
To Kiebel, his award says more about what the team has been able to accomplish than anything else. “My name just happened to be at head coach,” he said.
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