Swede girls get win at Hershey quad
Gothenburg defeats Ainsworth.
HERSHEY—Sometimes a volleyball coach throws a new player to the wolves to gain experience.
Other times, it’s out of necessity.
Coach Mary Clark said her change in lineup for Saturday’s Hershey Invite was both.
With Abie Jensen out of town and Joslyn Oliver out for the season with a foot injury, Clark was forced to try girls in new positions.
For the most part, she said, it worked out but after going 1-2 on the day, Clark second-guessed herself.
“Maybe it was too many changes,” Clark said of moving freshman Jacey Wiggins from outside to middle hitter and inserting senior Michelle Jack on the right side. “Making the adjustment was a little rough.”
Gothenburg lost to Bridgeport in the first game of the day 25-13, 25-13.
“Bridgeport had three very strong attackers who could hit the ball wherever they wanted,” Clark said.
The Swedes came back strong-er and a little more stable against Hershey, Clark said, but the ball just wouldn’t fall their way.
Gothenburg fell to Hershey 25-19, 25-23.
“That was a game that could have gone either way,” Clark said. “I’d like to get another shot at them. At times we did not play aggressively and I think we could do better against that team.”
In the final game of the day, the Swedes pulled out a 25-11, 25-19 win over Ainsworth.
“We beat Ainsworth like we should beat Ainsworth,” Clark said. “We played for the respect of our team.”
Clark moved Wiggins back to the right side and tried sophomore Makayla Franzen in the middle. It worked out, she said.
“These girls gel like family,” Clark said. “They came back and gave everything they had to play for each other.”
Setters McKenzie Geiken and Kira Peterson deserve some of the credit, the coach said.
“They are working really hard to run a variety of sets that I ask from them,” she said, “and they’re doing a good job.”
The Swedes, now 6-6, host the Gothenburg Invite on Saturday.
The Swedes will play Ord at 11 a.m., Holdrege at 12:15 p.m. and Perkins County 1:45 p.m. in the round-robin tournament.