By Cara L. Dempski
COLFAX — First-year Boyceville volleyball coach Keri Peterson knew her team would have to play its best ball of the season going into its WIAA Division 3 regional quarterfinal match in Colfax last Tuesday.
Sadly, that did not happen.
“We struggled with Colfax’s serves and hitting,” Peterson said after the match. “We didn’t block well, and couldn’t pass to set up an offense in the first two sets.”
[emember_protected] Still, the October 17 contest against the five-time defending D-SC conference champion Vikings was not a complete wash, since the Lady Bulldogs dug deep and made the Vikings fight for the third-set win to take the match 3-0. Colfax took the first two sets 25-15 and 25-10 before Boyceville was able to get an offense going to fight to a 25-20 finish in the third.
Peterson said middle hitter Tyra Kostman gave Boyceville a much needed spark in the third set with several kills. The coach said she was pleased with how the team rallied in the final set and played more like the team she has come to know in her first season as head coach.
Kostman landed seven kills against the Vikings, Mariah Drury added another five, and Alyx Bloom put down another four. Amber Retzloff set up seven scoring attacks, Drury put up another three, and senior Haley Wold assisted on one attack.
Jaida Peterson took 21 digs, Hannah Johnson turned away nine attacks, and Retzloff took six digs.
The Bulldogs recorded just one ace in the match, with Hannah Johnson taking credit for it, but served at 94 percent as a team and had only three errors.
Peterson said she knew 2017 would be a growing year for the Lady Bulldogs after graduating so many talented players this past May. Her team was inexperienced in varsity play, and the goal was to improve each week while remaining competitive in the Dunn-St. Croix.
“This team worked hard, and made significant strides this season,” Peterson said. “We probably surprised a few teams, like Mondovi and Elk Mound, when we pulled out wins in some sets this season.”
Peterson professed excitement over what next season can bring for this year’s underclassmen after gaining some needed experience in 2017.
The Bulldogs finished their season 5-18 overall and finished the Dunn-St. Croix season 2-6. [/emember_protected]