Volleyball team sweeps home opponents

The American Volleyball Coaches Association No. 21 ranked Warhawk volleyball team (10-4) faced a trio of WIAC opponents last week to begin conference play.

The team lost to UW-Stevens Point on Sept. 21, but won games at home against UW-Superior and UW-Eau Sept. 23 and 24.

Left to right: Sofia Sanchez, Alivia Holman and Lauren Grant rise up to block a spike from UW-Superior last Friday. They would finish with two, five and four blocks respectively, while the `Hawks out-blocked the Yellowjackets 13-4. Photo by Andrew Smith

The ‘Hawks will continue conference play at 7 p.m. tonight against UW-La Crosse at home.

For the first time since 1985, the Pointers gave the `Hawks all they could handle in Stevens Point last week for their WIAC opener, winning 3-0.

“Stevens Point just played a great game; we never really disrupted their system,” Head Coach Stacy Boudreau said. “The key was their setter, who played very well; she just put her hitters in good positions to score. We struggled a bit too. I mean we had our opportunities, but I think that may be the best team they have ever had.”

Things went much better once the `Hawks returned home, where the team is currently 8-0, for a pair of games last Friday and Saturday.

The `Hawks routed UW-Superior 3-0. The `Hawks took an uneventful first set 25-19 in roughly 20 minutes of play.

The `Hawks had opportunities to win the set early, but ran into some serving trouble and left the door open for the Yellowjackets. The team would finish with 11 serving errors to Superior’s 6.

Saturday morning the team hosted UW-Eau Claire and won 3-0.

The second set was rough for the `Hawks as their offense was stymied by unforced errors. The team was stabilized by kills from senior Sofia Sanchez and freshman Alivia Holman, who finished with seven.

Leading 2-0 going into the final set, sophomore Heidi Buss put the game away with a block to make it 25-21.

“That block felt awesome; it felt so good to seal the win,” Buss said. She finished the game with four blocks and 34 assists.

The `Hawks finished the game with eight service aces but had seven errors. When asked about the serving errors, Buss said it just comes with playing aggressively.

“When you serve as aggressive as we do, you run the risk of more errors, but it’s better than just serving up lollipops,” Buss said.

Sanchez also had a big day compiling 17 kills, nine digs and two service aces.

“I was really proud of the way our team played today,” Sanchez said. “We got down a few times but we just kept pushing and never lost focus.”