GRANTSBURG – Despite what Grantsburg coach Deb Allaman-Johnson described as a lackluster performance against the Chequamegon Screaming Eagles on Thursday, Oct. 19, the Pirates managed to get the regional semifinal win, by scores of 25-21, 25-21 and 25-16.
“I hope that everyone scouting Grantsburg for the playoffs saw this game! This outing would give all potential opponents a definite sense of security and confidence. Wow,” said Allaman-Johnson.
At one point the Pirates found themselves leading by a point or two, and fell behind by as much as two points, but still managed to play relatively error-free volleyball and without any negative energy according to Allaman-Johnson.
“It was just one of those days. We brought a little more fire during the third set and held on for the win. This match will not go down in history or our memory as anything other than a ‘W,’” Allaman-Johnson said.
Serving 100 percent on the night were Alaina Oachs, Olivia Ohnstad and Jenna McNally, who also recorded two aces.
Charli Siebenthal led with nine assists and Ohnstad had eight. Randi Siebenthal and Kenna Johnson each had nine kills and Ohnstad had eight.
Ohnstad had four blocks and Rachel Tooze had three blocks. McNally finished with 19 digs, Randi Siebenthal had 10, Linda Harmon added six and Olivia Oachs and Alaina Oachs each had four.
“Despite the game’s ho-hum feel, we still managed to serve 96 percent, pass 94.5 percent of their serves playable, hit over .200 with 38-percent kills and nearly met our goal of two blocks per set. So it wasn’t even a poor performance on paper. Either way, it’s done and we are moving on,” Allaman-Johnson said.
Grantsburg 3, Clear Lake 0
GRANTSBURG – The Pirates sweep over Chequamegon helped Grantsburg reach the regional championship on Saturday, Oct. 21, where they came away with an impressive 26th regional championship in school history, over Clear Lake.
The win helped set the Pirates up against Colfax this Thursday, Oct. 26, in the sectional semifinal. A win over Colfax will put the Pirates on the doorstep to state. The sectional final will be against either Regis or Cochrane-Fountain City.
The Pirates big win over Clear Lake, by scores of 25-19, 25-11 and 25-15, was a lot different than their win two nights earlier, where the Pirates had a lackluster performance according to coach Deb Allaman-Johnson.
“We came to play! And that is exactly what we did tonight!” Allaman-Johnson said. Clear Lake’s program is growing and blossoming under the leadership of new head coach Alicia Strilzuk. She has a dominant group of sophomores with great support from other classes. They have a strong youth program, several top club players, and I have also seen their current eighth graders play; they are amazing. Look for a long run of greatness from the Warriors in the future!”
Serving 100 percent for the Pirates were Linda Harmon, Olivia Ohnstad and Kenna Johnson. Randi and Charli Siebenthal each had two aces and Charli Siebenthal led with 19 assists. Johnson finished with 12 kills and Brooke Quimby and Randi Siebenthal each had eight kills.
The defense really shined for the Pirates against some tough Clear Lake hitters, as Grantsburg had a total of 43 digs. Randi Siebenthal and Jenna McNally led with 13 apiece and Olivia Oachs finished with six. Quimby had five blocks and Johnson had four.
“My heart bursts with pride in our athletes. They battled and believed and brought nothing but positive energy to the court, bouncing back quickly after errors and firing back more unified, solid, and determined than ever,” Allaman-Johnson said, and added that she isn’t taking this regional title for granted against a great Clear Lake team.
“I have been on staff for 21 of the 26 regional titles. There were a few times in the late ‘90s and early 2000s that a regional championship was assumed and hardly even celebrated with anything other than a perfunctory photograph. Not the case this year or most years in recent history. Clear Lake is a great team. This was a big win. And we are very, very grateful and happy.”