Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Girls VB stays focused on Lasers

from today's Waukesha Freeman -

Kettle Moraine 0

North learned a lot from older brother
CMH junior helps Crusaders sweep Lasers

By Tom Badger, 
Freeman Correspondent 

WALES — Like brother, like sister.

That’s how Tori North sees it, as the Catholic Memorial High School junior is making her mark on the top-ranked Division 2 girls volleyball team.

North’s overall play Tuesday night helped the Crusaders sweep Kettle Moraine 25-17, 25-11, 25-19 to
 improve to 4-0 in Classic 8 Conference action and 19-3 overall.

Moments after the victory, Memorial coach Ted Schulte was quick to point out North’s contributions to the team.

“Tori is an outstanding player,” Schulte said. “She’s patiently waited her turn for opportunities. When she gets in there, she’s been steady as a rock. For her first year on varsity, she doesn’t seem fazed by the pressure and performs at a very high level.”

North admits she had a pretty good coach growing up: her older brother, Chandler, a standout on the CMH boys team who graduated in May.

“I watched every one of his games and took a lot of advice from him
 through the years,” North said. “He taught me how to swing properly and, more importantly, always come out with a positive attitude. That way, if I stay up, the entire team stays up.”

The Crusaders were up for most of Tuesday night.

Tied 3-3 in the first game, Memorial outscored the Lasers 10-3 to open up a 13-6 lead. The Crusaders run was started by a pair of aces by senior Hayley Levenhagen and two kills from sophomore Alexis Alden.

Memorial was cruising along 19-13 before KM pulled to within 20-16 after Megan Smet knocked a shot off a Memorial defender. Ahead 21-17, CMH won the last four points with sophomore setter Maddy Rondeau on the serve. Alden posted six kills
 in the first game.

Memorial got off to a 14-7 lead in the second game before North pitched in with three kills from the outside position to stretch the lead to 18-8. Sophomore Ivey Whalen kept the attack going with a quick set kill, and sophomore Kaitlyn Zingsheim added two points at the net.

“I do what I can,” North said. “This team is so talented and good at everything they do. I just play the best I can and see where it goes.”

Alden put the second game away with her 12th kill of the match.

“The strength of the team is its balance,” Schulte said.

KM first-year coach Joey Jonas

“You name it, they (CMH) do it well,” Jonas said. “Offensively, across the board, they have the advantage on us. They have three hitters in front at all times, and that makes it hard for us to play defense. When we couldn’t get swings, their defense was just eating everything up.”

The third game was KM’s best game of the night. After going up 8-3 after a small by sophomore Kyenna Stanley-Reckin, the Lasers held the lead until CMH tied it at 12-12. Jonas said contributions
 by sophomore Kaitlyn Jurss and junior Mackenzie Lauer helped the cause.

A serve by KM junior Breanna Perron just inside the line pulled the Lasers to 1819 before CMH seized control with kills by senior Lexie Calloway and Whalen and two non-returnable serves by Rondeau, who also gained high marks from her coach.

“Maddy is the linchpin to so many aspects of what we’re doing,” Schulte said. “She is integral to the defense, integral to the offense and very important to our operation.”

Kettle Moraine fell to 1-3 in league play and 14-11 overall.

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