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Knights turn back Groton for sweep

Aberdeen Christian volleyball coach Maggie Jett, center, talks to her players between games during last Thursday night’s match against Warner at the Aberdeen Christian School gym. The Knights recorded a road sweep in Groton on Monday night. Photo by John Davis taken 8/26/2021

GROTON – Solid defense led to an effective offense for Aberdeen Christian Monday night.

The Knights took care of the back row to set up the front row en route to a 25-14, 27-25, 25-22 non-conference volleyball victory over Groton.

“The girls played well tonight doing a better job passing and running our offense than in our last game,” said Christian coach Maggie Jett. “We had a more balanced distribution of attacking in the front row due to our backrow defense passing the ball well, tonight.”

The Knights had four hitters with at least seven kills in the contest, led by Mary Fites with a dozen. Mallory Miller added eight, followed by Grace Kaiser and Hanna Miller with seven apiece.

Christian also kept the Tigers off balance with a strong service attack which led to 10 aces. Ruth Hulscher had three, while Kaiser and Hanna Miller each had two.

“The girls served tough keeping them out of system a lot,” Jett said.

Still, the hosts did not go quietly, forcing extra points in the second set and pushing Christian to the finish in the third.

However, the Knights were up to the task defensively to remain in control.

“Groton did a nice job moving the ball around and making us work on defense,” Jett said, “but we picked up a lot of balls we haven’t been getting to in the last couple of games.”

Christian features a senior-dominated squad and that leadership came to the forefront against the Tigers in the victory.

“I saw the maturity of our seniors staying focused when Groton was pushing harder and things weren’t going well,” Jett said. “They did a nice job taking care of the ball and limiting mistakes when we needed to finish the game.”

Aspen Johnson led Groton with eight kills, followed by Anna Fjeldheim and Sydney Leicht with six apiece.

Christian, 2-1 on the season, hosts Iroquois-Doland on Thursday.

Serving: Aberdeen Christian 79-90 10 aces (Ruth Hulscher 11-13 3 aces, Grace Kaiser 18-18 2 aces, Hanna Miller 7-12 2 aces); Groton 13 aces (Madeline Fliehs 4, Anna Fjeldheim 2, Sydney Leicht 2).

Hitting: Aberdeen Christian 89-96 36 kills (Mary Fites 28-31 12 kills, Mallory Miller 14-17 8 kills, Kaiser 16-16 7 kills, H. Miller 13-17 7 kills); Groton 28 kills (Aspen Johnson 8, Fjeldheim 6, Leicht 6).

Setting: Aberdeen Christian 92-94 29 assists (Kaylee Block 48-50 26 assists); Groton 26 assists (Elizabeth Fliehs 26).

Digs: Aberdeen Christian 44 (Joy Rohrbach 13, Hulscher 9); Groton 76 (Alyssa Thaler 25, Leicht 20, Allyssa Locke 13).

Blocks: Aberdeen Christian 3 solos 7 assists (Kaiser 2 solos, M. 1 solo 3 assists, H. Miller 2 assists, Chloe Bosma 2 assists); Groton 3 (M. Fliehs 2, Johnson 1).

JV: Groton 25-15, 25-21.

Junior High: Aberdeen Christian 25-23, 25-17.

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