By Arely Fontes
On Saturday, September 24, the Lady Mustangs battled a tough game with the Deshler Dragons which ended up with a disheartening loss at the Hampton tournament. Coach tenBensel said, “I thought the girls came out ready to play in pool play! They have really started playing scrappy and aggressive and that has really helped us to be successful!” It was a really busy week for the Silver Lake volleyball team; the girls played Kenesaw on Tuesday and Lawrence Nelson on Thursday. The Mustangs fell to the Dragons in set one 20-25 but came back to swap scores defeating Deshler in set two 25-20. The defense helped the Mustangs stay in the game, with the team totaling 80 digs. Freshman libero Sophie Schmidt had 22 digs and senior Georgi tenBensel had 19. Also on defense, sophomore Katy Soucek dominated the net with three ace blocks. The Mustangs were unable to win the third set, narrowly falling to the Dragons 21-25. Behind the service line, the Mustangs totaled 12 aces with junior Sydney Bartels earning 5 herself. Offensively, tenBensel and senior Brooklyn Meyer led the team with 10 and 6 kills respectively. Senior Lexi Wengler had 11 assists for the match.
Coming off the three-set loss to Deshler, the Mustangs stayed positive and played together to come out strong against Red Cloud, dominating the first set 25-8. “We just had to play our game again and stay positive and stick together as a team. We had to block out the last game and had to go into the Red Cloud game like we normally do,” said Wengler. Silver Lake had success from the service line, earning 9 aces and forcing 25 reception errors for the Warriors; Bartels had 4 aces in the match. The second set was a much closer match, with the Mustangs winning 27-25. Silver Lake’s back row was strong, picking up 40 digs, with Schmidt and Meyer contributing 13 and 11 each and holding the Warriors to a 0.052 hitting percentage and 13 kills to the Mustangs’ 27. tenBensel had 10 herself, with Wengler and Meyer each adding 5.
The Mustangs finished the day taking on Hampton for the third and fourth place match-up. The first set was a back-and-forth game, with the Mustangs narrowly defeating the Hawks 26-24. Leading the charge on offense was Meyer with 7 kills. tenBensel and Soucek each contributed 5. Helping them along the way were Wengler, junior Morgan Dinkler, and Bartels setting. Wengler added 6 assists, and Dinkler and Bartels each had 4. The second set was also a tight match, but the Mustangs were able to overcome the Hawks with a 25-19 win, earning third place in the tournament. On the defensive side, Silver Lake put up a big block, with Soucek earning 2 ace blocks and tenBensel and senior Josi Sharp each with 1. Schmidt and Meyer worked in the back row, with 13 and 9 digs, respectively. The Mustangs look ahead to a slower week, with the Harvard Quad on Tuesday, September 27.