Streaking Wolves sweep Raiders

LAKE PARK, Iowa -- Serving over 91 percent for the match, including 19 aces, Harris-Lake Park claimed an easy victory Wednesday night, sweeping Ruthven-Ayrshire in second-round action of the Class 1A, Region 3 high school volleyball tournament.

Brian Korthals/Daily Globe Harris Lake Park senior Leah Elsbecker (8) battles above the net with Ruthven-Ayrshire defender Sadie Forey (20) during Wednesday night playoff action in Lake Park.

LAKE PARK, Iowa -- Serving over 91 percent for the match, including 19 aces, Harris-Lake Park claimed an easy victory Wednesday night, sweeping Ruthven-Ayrshire in second-round action of the Class 1A, Region 3 high school volleyball tournament.

Game scores were 25-12, 25-12 and 25-14.

The victory was H-LP's 15th in a row, as the Corn Belt Conference runners-up (9-1) have not lost a match since being defeated at home by league champion North Sentral Kossuth five weeks ago on Sept. 16.

"We do have some ability," said H-LP head coach Daryl Meyer after the match. "This was not our best performance tonight, but we did what we had to do and beat a team that we had already beat three times and we are moving on."

The Wolves (23-5) will play Graettinger-Terril in the quarterfinals Tuesday in Everly.


G-T defeated Clay Central-Everly Wednesday night in three straight games, 25-20, 25-20 and 25-19.

Putting 63-of-69 serves (.913) in play against R-A, the Wolves were control the entire match, as the Raiders (2-17) held only one lead all night -- an 8-7 edge early in Game 2.

"Harris-Lake Park really controlled the match with its good serving," R-A head coach Kim Sierck said. "They also see holes in the defense very well. They are a well-coached team that is always well-prepared."

The H-LP trio of Deni Peters (13-for-14, six aces), Jenna Van Iperen (18-for-18, four aces) and Jena Peters (12-for-13, four aces) combined for 14 of the service aces placed by the Wolves.

"Our serving was our strength tonight," noted Meyer. "Jenna Van Iperen, our libero, never missed once and served four nice aces."

While the Wolves did hit lots of spikes out of bounds in the match, the team displayed a balanced attack at the net as the foursome of Deni Peters (nine), Jena Peters (seven), Leah Eisbecker (six) and Laura Rowe (five) combined for a total of 27 kills.

"The Peters' sisters smacked some good ones, and Leah was 11-for-14 attacking," said Meyer. "But, overall, our hitting was not as sharp as it has been in other matches."

Setting up the hitters were Jodi Hibma (10-for-11 serving, two aces) and Rowe (one service ace) with 16 and 10 set assists, respectively.


Jena Peters had a team-high three blocks, while Rebecca Hibma and Rowe each had a pair of stuffs.

The Wolves worked to a quick 7-2 lead in Game 1, before the Raiders (1-9 in the Cornbelt) rallied to close the gap to 8-7.

A nice dig by Eisbecker (two ace serves), followed by a well-placed hit by Rowe sparked a 3-0 run for the Wolves.

A bit later, three straight ace serves by Jena Peters triggered a 7-0 H-LP surge, as the Wolves' lead increased from 11-9 to 18-9.

Back-to-back kills by Eisbecker and Rebecca Hibma capped that burst.

A nice "hang time" spike by Deni Peters and an ace serve by Jodi Hibma highlighted a 5-2 H-LP run, extending the lead to 23-11.

The Wolves closed out the Game 1 victory with a spike kill by Rowe (from Deni Peters) and a spike kill by Deni Peters (from Jodi Hibma).

With the score tied at 3-3 in Game 2, a kill by Jena Peters and an ace serve by Rowe gave the Wolves a 5-3 lead.


R-A, however, rallied with a 5-2 run to take its 8-7 lead.

A service error by the Raiders was followed by an ace serve by Eisbecker, a stuff at the net by Rebecca Hibma and a spike out of bounds by R-A, giving H-LP an 11-8 advantage.

A bit later, Rebecca Hibma slammed a scorching spike to the floor, Deni Peters followed with a kill and Jodi Hibma delivered back-to-back ace serves, as the Wolves increased their lead to 15-11.

A hammering hit by Jena Peters was followed by three straight Raider errors, and after two ace serves by Deni Peters, H-LP was in control, leading 22-12.

After another R-A mistake, Rowe smacked a right-side kill and Iperen made a perfect pass to Jodi Hibma, who set Eisbecker for the game-clinching kill.

A similar bump-set-spike play -- Iperen to Jodi Hibma to Deni Peters -- highlighted H-LP's start to Game 3.

After Deni Peters won a battle at the net and Van Iperen served one of her aces, the Wolves claimed an early 5-1 lead.

A kill by Eisbecker (from Jodi Hibma) and back-to-back service aces by Deni Peters increased the Wolves' advantage to 9-2.


Jena Peters and Jodi Hibma later combined for a block at the net, as H-LP stayed in control, leading 10-4.

Logan Hively made two good plays in a row for the Wolves, setting up Eisbecker for a kill and then teaming with Rebecca Hibma on an ace block, resulting in a 13-4 H-LP advantage.

Back-to-back ace serves by Jena Peters, and a later service ace by Eisbecker increased the lead to 18-5.

But the Raiders rallied, scoring nine of the next 16 points, causing Meyer a bit of concern.

"They scored seven of those points in two rotations," the coach said. "We did not respond very well when we had the chance to close things out."

An ace serve by R-A's Amanda Long, an amazing one-arm save by Caitlyn Reed, and an ace serve by Kendra Feldman sparked that final Raider rally.

"We had a couple of nice serves and made some plays late in the third game," declared Sierck. "We came ready to compete, but overall, our passing was not good and that kept us from being able to attack very much."

Another Van Iperen ace serve, a well-placed tip by Jena Peters, a combination block by Rowe and Jena Peters, a leaping tip kill by Rowe and a nifty bump-set-spike play (Jena Peters to Jodi Hibma to Eisbecker) closed out the victory for the Wolves.


The match lasted only 46 minutes and the Wolves had just two ace serves delivered against them -- both late in Game 3 -- while stroking 19 of their own, which was more than three times the number of serves (six) that the entire team missed in the three games.

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