Chargers make quick work of Tigers

Staff photo by Steve Muscatello Minnesota Valley Lutheran’s Abbie Riederer (2) spikes the ball as Kora Wahl (9) of Springfield defends Tuesday at MVL.

NEW ULM — After setting the Minnesota Valley Lutheran High School career record for set assists last Thursday in a road win against Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop, Maddie Pearson continued to set her teammates up well on Tuesday night as the Chargers swept Springfield in Tomahawk Conference volleyball action at MVL high school. Set scores were 26-24, 25-16, 25-17.

Pearson passed Miranda Maasz’s previous career record and now sits at 1,711 career set assists after having 27 against Springfield on Tuesday. Pearson also had 12 digs and two blocks in the win Tuesday.

While the school record is now out of the way for Pearson, she never really let it affect her throughout the season to begin with.

“At the beginning of the season, I really was not worried about setting the record,” Pearson said. “My main focus was the team and winning. And so, it is fun to break records, but I couldn’t have done it without the team, and I played the same.”

Mara Weisensel had 17 kills and four blocks also to lead the Chargers against the Tigers. Weisensel also had an eventful past weekend as she passed the school record for most kills in a single season, previously held by Heather Danell.

Weisensel now sits at 392 kills this year.

Also for MVL, Lili Mohror had 11 kills, three blocks and three ace serves, while Emma Nelson had four kills, five digs and two ace serves and Kaylee Hunter had nine digs.

The Tigers were led by Kora Wahl, who had 10 kills, 13 digs and a block. Springfield also got 22 set assists and 12 digs from Eva Mark and six kills from Meriah Kirschstein, while Cylee Graff and Sydney Hauger each had five kills and five digs apiece.

While an ace by Courtney Wendt put the Tigers up 3-0 in the first set, MVL got an 8-2 swing to lead 8-5, being led by three blocks and a pair of kills from Weisensel. A 6-0 run put the Tigers back in front 11-8, with a kill from Hauger tying things at 8-all and a kill from Wendt putting Springfield ahead.

The Chargers tied it back up at 11-all before the Tigers went back in front and led by as much as 4 before Weisensel began to take over in the closing minutes, getting five kills in a row to put MVL up 23-22. While the Tigers didn’t fall without a fight, Mohror got the final three kills for the Chargers, including the set point.

MVL took an early 8-2 lead early in the second set to force a Springfield timeout before the Tigers again battled back to take a 9-8 lead after a kill by Anna Mattson, a kill by Hauger and an MVL violation before the serve. While the Chargers committed their share of errors during the rest of the set, they buckled down and closed the set out on a 6-1 run to lead 2-0.

MVL started up 5-0 in the third set after an ace serve by Mohror and led 16-7 later on after a 6-0 run that saw a pair of kills by Mohror and a kill each by Nelson and Haley Herfendal. Back-to-back kills by Wahl had the Tigers down 18-14, but the Chargers picked up their attack again late and held on for the sweep.

“I think we were kind of nervous and uptight and making some silly mistakes [early on], where the second and third game we got our head in the game and figured it out, collected ourselves,” Pearson said.

It was also “Charging for a Cure” night, with contests and drawings collecting money to donate in the fight against cancer.

The Chargers, who are still a perfect 7-0 in the conference and 21-3-1 overall on the year, travel to Morgan to take on Cedar Mountain at 7 p.m. Thursday.

Springfield, 2-5 in the conference and 13-13 overall, hosts Sleepy Eye at 7 p.m. Thursday.