Mayer Lutheran players celebrate a block in their match Friday against Wadena-Deer Creek. Photo: LEILA NAVIDI • email@example.com
Photo gallery: Class 1A semifinal matches
When things are going well for Mayer Lutheran, as they were in a 25-22, 25-23, 25-22 victory over Wadena-Deer Creek on Friday in the Class 1A semifinals, the Crusaders are a sight to behold.
The senior-dominated lineup moves smoothly, with nary a misstep or mis-hit. Players find their way to places on the court in an almost instinctual manner, a dance of precision and flow.
“Our experience really helps us,” said outside hitter Sophia Heuer, one of nine seniors on the roster. “We know our positions and what we’re doing.”
Outside hitter Madi Beck nodded in agreement. “We’ve played together for so long. We trust each other. We know what every one of us can do.”
After battling to a close first-set victory, the Crusaders (31-2) were at their best in the second set, passing with accuracy and attacking the corners. Their 25-13 victory was Volleyball 101.
“When we play loose, we play our best game,” said setter Madison Hucky.
And when things weren’t going as smoothly, they leaned on their experience. Wadena-Deer Creek (26-7) led 18-13 in the third set before Mayer Lutheran responded with a 7-0 run to take control for good.
“We didn’t think we were going to lose,” Hucky said. “As long as we play like we did in the second game, we knew we could come back.”