Friday, June 22, 2018
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Injuries hamper Swede volleyball team

Gothenburg drops six straight games.

Injuries are as much a part of high school sports as winning and losing.

The Swede volleyball team, which started the season with a great deal of optimism, has been forced to battle through plenty of injuries mid-year.

“We’re seeing a trend where girls are having more and more foot issues,” said Swede assistant coach Jim Clark. “It’s been a pattern for several years.”

The Swedes have been hit hard, Clark said, with key players being forced to watch from the sidelines.

“We’re pretty banged up,” Clark said, “and we’re having to scramble to fill some spots.”

Those lineup changes, including bringing players up from junior varsity, can throw a hitch in the rhythm the Swedes have worked hard to attain.

“Anytime you mix that up you’re going to have a little struggle getting in sync,” he said.

Although the Swedes continue to play hard and the effort is apparent, Clark said the lack of rhythm has led to losses in some close matches.

At Grant on Sept. 29, the Swedes played tough in a triangular but dropped both matches.

Gothenburg fell 25-23, 25-23 to Chase County and 26-24, 20-25, 25-15 to Perkins County.

“We played both teams down to the wire,” Clark said. “I can’t imagine that at full speed we would not have beaten them.”

Senior middle hitter Emily Max had a big night hitting 81 of 111 attempts with 24 total kills. Max also had 12 blocks in the two games and 32 defensive digs.

Fellow senior Kira Peterson led the Swedes setting with 84 of 94 sets good and 25 set assists.

The struggles continued for the Swedes at the Gothenburg Invite over the weekend.

The girls played a round-robin style quadrangular with Ord, Holdrege and Perkins County dropping all three matches.

Ord defeated Gothenburg 25-18, 25-19 and Holdrege beat the Swedes 25-21, 25-21.

Gothenburg pushed Perkins County to three sets but lost 18-25, 25-16, 25-18.

“The effort was there,” Clark said, “we just couldn’t get things to fall our way.”

Individual statistics were not available for the Gothenburg Invite.

The Swedes are now 6-11.

“We’ve lost five in a row,” Clark said, “but we’re not done yet. We’re feeling very good and optimistic about having some kids on the mend and getting them back on the floor.”

The Swedes will attempt to get back in the win column as they host Lexington and McCook in a triangular on Thursday.

Then they get a week to heal before hosting Southwest on Oct. 15, a game that was originally scheduled to be played at Southwest.