Title slips Hatchets’ grasp
A loss in the final game of the regular season stood between the THS volleyball team and a share of the GNC title.
Tomahawk, with HM honors in the coaches state poll, had swept Northland Pines on Tuesday and Medford and Mosinee to open Saturday’s GNC #2 Meet to improve to 10-1 on the conference season. But a four-set loss to third-place Antigo in the finale allowed Rhinelander to take the title with an 11-1 record.
Antigo prevailed 21-25, 25-16, 25-20, 25-21, after the Hatchets had cruised past Medford (25-15, 25-17, 25-19) and Mosinee (25-11, 25-13, 25-23).
“We played aggressively against Medford and Mosinee and did a good job of taking care of the net,” THS coach Jen Pfannerstill said. “We had control of those matches and were solid throughout. Even when we were down by a few we did a nice job of coming back and siding out to put ourselves in a position to win.
“That is, until Antigo. We just couldn’t get a block up on their outside hitters and our passers struggled to play behind our block. We didn’t take away a portion of the court and that killed us. Without the block we struggled defensively and we didn’t pass well enough to run our offense.
“It’s frustrating to end the season on a loss and not bring home a conference championship. But I certainly am glad that it was today instead of next week. Hopefully this makes us more aware of how clean we need to play on our side of the net in order to win. We just had too many unforced errors and that is unacceptable to us. Teams need to earn points against us instead of us giving them away. That’s the frustration. But if we realize that and clean it up then we’ll win.
“We need to realize that this was not our ultimate goal. It would have been nice, but it’s not necessary for our end goal (of a state championship). We just need to stay consistent and keep that in perspective.”
GNC Meet offense came from: Anna Nyberg (37 kills, 4 blocks, 40 digs); Becca Doughty (3 bl, 102 assists, 28 d); Hanna Meyer (30 k, 6 aces, 3 bl, 27 d); Alex DuPlayee (22 k, 4 bl, 6 ac, 29 d); Hanna Doughty (18 k, 2 bl); Amanda Schneider (10 ac, 27 d); Maddie Garrison (14 d); Emily Schneider (6 k, 3 ac); and Hannah Feest (5 d).
Soaring over Eagles
Tomahawk made short work of Pines in a 25-11, 25-11, 25-18 match.
“The girls were really focused and I thought did a nice job of staying aggressive throughout the night,” Pfannerstill said. “We had to be prepared for some out of system plays and kept focused. The tempo of the game was slower than we are used to and took a little getting used to.
“The girls took care of their side of the net. I really thought we were solid in all facets of the game and are peaking at the right time of the season.”
Putting Pines down were: Nyberg (17 kills, 4 ac, 8 digs); B. Doughty (29 assists, 4 d); H. Doughty (7 k, 5 bl, 3 d); DuPlayee (7 k, 10 d); A. Schneider (8 ac, 6 d); Meyer (5 k, 3 d); E. Schneider (3 bl); Garrison (3 d).
Tomahawk closed out a 10-2 GNC record, and is 31-10 overall. Antigo (8-4), Medford (5-7), Mosinee (4-8) finished in the middle.
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