EAU CLAIRE — For the second year in a row, the Elk Mound volleyball team saw their season end at the hands of the Eau Claire Regis Ramblers. This time it was in the regional final played in the Ramblers gym Oct. 20. The Mounders, a number four seed in the Division 3 Osseo-Fairchild sectional, gave the number one seeded Regis team a tough match but eventually fell in three sets 25-23, 25-16, 25-22.
Elk Mound appeared to carry some momentum over from their previous match against Colfax as they held a lead several times in the first set and had a four point lead at 20-16. The set was tied at 22-22 but the Mounders couldn’t stop the front line of Regis as they nailed three straight kills to take the first set.
The close loss took the wind out of the Mounder’s sails and they fell behind 8-2 in the second set and just couldn’t get back on track the rest of the set. But they re-grouped and made the third set pretty interesting, as Kaysi Meindel scored on a kill and Amanda Ward blocked a shot for a 3-3 tie early on. Anna Sessions scored on a block to make it 7-7 before the Ramblers pulled ahead by three points. Elk Mound stayed within striking distance, getting to a one point deficit at 15-14 in part from a Maddy Polden kill, another one from Meindel to go with a block, and a slam from Ward. Ward denied a Regis kill attempt at the net, knotting the score at 17-17 but a couple of misplaced shots by the Mounders resulted in points for the Ramblers and they took a 20-17 lead. The Ramblers then had a momentary lapse as they sent the ball out of bounds twice after Ward scored on a cross court shot and the set was tied again at 20-20. Sessions gave her team a short lead on a tip at the middle of the net but Regis moved back ahead 23-21. Meindel sent another ball to the floor to get back to a one point deficit, but an Elk Mound error and a big kill shot finally gave Regis the set and match.
Meindel led her team in kills with seven and Sessions added six to go with four each from Polden and Ward. Becca Kopp set her teammates up 11 times while Katie Johnson added six assists. The defense was led by Polden with 10 digs while Kopp had seven and Johnson and Katie Bergh both collected six. As a team, they missed only three serves in 58 attempts as Kopp finished 13 for 13, Polden went nine for nine and Ward went eight for eight.