PREP VOLLEYBALL: 7th seed Falcons stun ChargersLUVERNE — Taking control with a 10-point victory in the second set Friday night, the seventh-seeded Red Rock Central Falcons claimed a four-game win over the second-seeded Westbrook-Walnut Grove Chargers in the quarterfinal round of the Section 3A South high school volleyball tournament at Luverne High School.
By: Lucas Knutson, Worthington Daily Globe
LUVERNE — Taking control with a 10-point victory in the second set Friday night, the seventh-seeded Red Rock Central Falcons claimed a four-game win over the second-seeded Westbrook-Walnut Grove Chargers in the quarterfinal round of the Section 3A South high school volleyball tournament at Luverne High School.
Game scores were 18-25, 25-15, 26-24 and 25-17.
RRC (14-12) advances to the sub-section semifinals Tuesday night when it will take on third-seeded Southwestern United in Luverne at 7:30 p.m. The Wildcats moved on with an exciting 3-2 victory over sixth-seeded Murray County Central Friday.
“I’m thrilled with how we played tonight,” RRC head coach Sara Arfsten said after the match. “The girls did a great job of executing our game plan throughout all four sets and really played the way that we are capable of. It was a fun win over a very good Chargers’ team who we played tough in a five-game loss during the regular season.”
W-WG, which ends the year with a fine record of 22-7, couldn’t duplicate that win (3-2 over RRC on Oct. 11) Friday night — although the Chargers did win the first set to take an early lead.
The Falcons were up 13-10 midway through the opening game, but the Chargers answered with a 10-1 burst to mount a 20-14 cushion. Back-to-back ace serves by Abby Herding (22-for-23 serving with four aces, 23 set assists) capped that rally that eventually led to a 25-18 win for W-WG.
RRC countered by taking a quick 9-3 lead in the second game, as Katie Larsen (18-for-19 serving with three aces, 10 kills) smacked a pair of kills in the middle and fired an ace serve to spark the Falcons.
A four-point service run by Tegan Derickson (23-for-26 serving with three aces, eight kills, 11 digs and 20 set assists) lifted RRC to a 19-12 lead a littler later, and the Falcons closed out a 25-15 win when Chloe Arfsten (eight kills, 18 digs) knocked down a kill.
Paige Erickson (15-for-16 serving, eight kills) scored on a tip to help give W-WG a 6-2 lead in the third set, while Dayna Comnick (eight kills) had a kill to make it 13-8 Chargers a bit later.
An 8-0 run by the Falcons changed the score to 16-13, and the teams went back-and-forth right down to the wire. An ace serve by Cassandra Erickson (15-for-16 serving with two aces, 10 kills) helped RRC escape with a 26-24 win by game’s end.
RRC then stormed out to a huge 20-8 lead in the fourth set, receiving kills from Erickson, Derickson, Fern Engen and Melanie Kedl — along with solid all-around court play by both Mikaela Smith (15 set assists) and Brooke Rasmussen (13 digs) — to build a commanding bulge.
W-WG pulled to within eight (22-14), but kills by Arfsten, Derickson and Engen sealed a 25-17 win for RRC and advanced the Falcons to the next round.
Hailey Osland (16-for-16 serving with an ace), Madison Takle (23 digs, six kills) and Alexa Byers (19 digs) were among the other statistical leaders for the Chargers.