St. Anthony finds a way to win in three-set victory over SEB

·3 min read

Sep. 22—It wasn't pretty, but the St. Anthony volleyball team got the job done against National Trail Conference rival St. Elmo Brownstown Tuesday night.

The Bulldogs won in three sets over the Eagles. St. Anthony lost the first set 15-25, won the second 25-20, and won the third 25-13.

After five matches in one day on Saturday, though, Bulldogs' head coach Cathy Wenthe felt that her team might have this kind of performance.

"I knew they might be a little flat from the weekend, and they were. We started with 10 hitting errors and five kills," Wenthe said.

That lackluster offense at the beginning did pick up, though.

St. Anthony finished the match with 31 kills.

Andrea Rudolphi led the team with 11, while Abbi Hatton had eight with just one error.

"Abbi's front row performance was excellent," Wenthe said. "I was pleased with her decisions, and the setters were doing a better job of spreading the offense and not just setting the outside."

Aside from Rudolphi and Hatton, the rest of the offense came from Lucy Fearday (six kills), Sophia Seagle (four kills), and Anna Niemeyer and Maddie Kibler (one kill).

Where Kibler shined at the most, however, was with her passing.

"Maddie did an excellent job of passing tonight. She passed a two, and I'm thrilled when she passes a two," Wenthe said.

Kibler did not record any assists but made up for it with an 18-dig evening, leading the team in that category.

As for the rest of the team, Taylor Quandt had 11 digs; Anna Faber had 10; Hatton had seven; Fearday had four; Addi Nuxoll had three, and Addie Wernsing and Rudolphi had two.

St. Anthony also added 24 assists, five blocks, and nine aces on the night.

Wernsing led the team in assists with 13, while Faber had 11. Fearday finished with a team-best three blocks, while Faber and Rudolphi had one, and Rudolphi and Hatton led the team with three aces, while Faber, Wernsing, and Kenzie Kabbes had one.

Meanwhile, for St. Elmo Brownstown, it was a much different story, even though head coach Jeni Haslett has seen it written before.

"We come out hot every single match," Haslett said. "We come out pumped and ready to go. We're doing great things; we're the aggressive team, we're hitting, we're passing well, and we're serving aggressively. But, as the night goes on, we slowly start to sit back, and we begin to watch, and we can't do that with teams like St. Anthony.

"We struggle with our emotions and aggressiveness, which killed us."

The Eagles finished with 21 kills to 11 hitting errors, equating to a .125 hitting percentage.

Laney Baldrige finished with five kills to go along with two blocks, 13 digs, and two assists, despite Haslett noting that she struggled to some degree.

"Laney struggled a little bit tonight, but on Laney's hot nights, Laney's hot. Tonight started that way and then dwindled," Haslett said.

Morgan Hall added four kills with one block, six digs, and one assist.

"Morgan is consistently doing well," Haslett said. "Our team is so tiny; we don't have any tall kids, so going up against schools like this who have tall kids and who are great blockers that are a struggle for us, so they do well with what they have and what's against the net."

Avery Myers had four kills with four digs and two assists. Peyton Garrard had four kills with two aces, four digs, and 14 assists. Lydia Smith had two kills with two digs and one assist. Shelby Sasse had two kills with one ace and 13 digs. Kinley Carson had one kill, and Jayna Ireland had four blocks and five digs to round out the team's statistics.

Contact EDN Sports Editor Alex Wallner at 618-510-9231 or alex.wallner@effinghamdailynews.com.