When you are leading the conference with a perfect 6-0 record, every other team is gunning for you which is what the Elk Mound volleyball team found out when they hosted the 2-4 Pepin Lakers Oct. 2.
The Mounders had to dig deep after losing the first set 25-21 but they rebounded with a 25-18 win in set number two. The Lakers prevailed in the third set 25-21, forcing Elk Mound to come from behind again and this time it took extra points as they won 27-25 to force the fifth and deciding set. The Mounders then finished the match off with a 15-9 win. Two days later, they traveled to Plum City to face the Blue Devils who were one of the favorites to win the conference this year and had just come off a tough five set loss to Colfax. Elk Mound started with a bang, winning the first set 25-16, but lost the next two 25-21, 25-23, putting them in a hole yet again. They regained their focus and pulled out a close 25-23 win to get to a fifth set, and with the lead going back and forth, a serving error by Plum City along with some timely kills on the Mounders part finally gave them the match win at 18-16. The win assures them of at least a tie for the conference championship with one game left at home against St. Croix Central Oct. 9.
Kaysi Meindel was the kill leader for Elk Mound with 18 and was a perfect 20 of 20 from the service line. Anna Sessions added 15 kills and scored more points with four solo blocks, Amanda Ward finished with 12 kills and 23 digs, Becca Kopp led the team in assists with 27 and was 23 of 24 serving, Katie Johnson added 16 assists and was 14 of 14 from the service line with a pair of aces and Maddy Polden collected 27 digs.
As a team, Elk Mound had only two serving errors in the five sets against the Blue Devils. Kopp was 21 for 21 with three aces, Meindel was 18 for 18, Katie Bergh was 17 for 17 and Ward finished 14 for 14. Meindel also slammed 27 kills while Sessions added 12 and Ward smacked nine to go with 21 digs. Kopp had a team leading 31 assists and Johnson set her teammates up 24 times. Bergh also had 15 digs while Polden dug the ball up 13 times and had a pair of blocks.
“Plum City really took us out of our game and we had to push through and regain our focus to earn the win,” Elk Mound coach Donna Weix said. “Our serving has really pulled us out in a lot of matches this year. We can’t afford to give points away so we have worked hard on serving this year. Plum City really covers the court and they were ahead of us in the fifth set several times. It was a very exciting match.”