Lutheran High wins D1-6 subdistrict
STANTON — The Lutheran High Northeast volleyball team remained true to its “all in” theme Tuesday night by getting plenty of contributions from numerous players.
As a result, the Eagles never allowed Randolph to establish itself offensively, helping Lutheran High dispatched the Cardinals 25-14, 25-13, and 25-14 to win the D1-6 subdistrict here.
“I thought we got contributions from a number of players. Our setters did a great job of using everybody, and a lot of hitters stepped up,” Lutheran High coach Kathy Gebhardt said. “We played much more solid than last night.”
One area that came up big for the Eagles was the service line, where servers accumulated a dozen ace serves, with Kendra Rosberg totaling four of those.
“Kendra is placing her serve where I’m calling it; she’s mixing up serving short, serving deep. She’s doing a really nice job,” Gebhardt said.
“Even John Cook (UNL volleyball coach) will say that serve and pass wins game. If you can serve aggressively and keep them off balance, and if you can pass on point, those are things that are really going to contribute to being a successful team,” she said. “We’ve stressed that right from the beginning of the season because we’re not super tall, so we have to use what we have and make the most of those strengths.”
Offensively, Lutheran High totaled 30 kills in three sets, while Randolph managed just 20.
Becca Gebhardt led the Eagles with 10, with Grace Bitney adding five, and Rosberg and Matty Boning each providing four.
“Matty Boning, our one senior, stepped up in the middle; she’s been a great leader for our team,” Gebhardt said. “She just wants to contribute, she wants to do whatever we ask her to do. She’s not real big, but we needed her to play in the middle and she’s embraced that role and works hard up there to go up against the bigger hitters and get blocks and get some good swings.”
The performance by Bitney, a sophomore whose four kills and two blocks helped the Eagles close out the match, was a pleasant surprise.
“She had an awesome series across the front row; we’d love to see that out of her more often. Hopefully, this gives her some confidence,” Gebhardt said.
Bitney is among several sophomore players playing important roles for Lutheran High. Others include setters Chloe Spence and Maddie Becker, and hitters Gebhardt and Kendra Larsen.
“The sophomore class is a good class; it’s the class where we have some numbers, and there’s talent there,” Gebhardt said. “They’re young and developing still, but they’re coming along. This entire group ... has really come together as a team.”
Although Lutheran High maintained control of all three sets, Randolph’s best moments during the match were keyed by effective serving, primarily from Cardinals senior Kelsie Eledge.
“Their Kelsie Eledge was a good server; we struggled with that a little bit,” Gebhardt said.
Gebhardt said she feels confident that her squad’s schedule — made up primarily of C1 and C2 opponents — has prepared her team for whomever that opponent may be in Saturday’s substate round.
“We were given a great opportunity this year when we were dropped to D1, and we want to make the most of this opportunity,” she said. “We play very few Class D1 teams; we play a C1 and C2 schedule. What we’ve said all along is that it’s tough to win when we play some really tough teams, but it makes us better. I think the girls are excited; it’s a fun atmosphere.”
D1-6 subdistrict final
Lutheran High Northeast defeats Randolph
25-14, 25-13, 25-14