Nikiski netters roll over Grace, Heritage

Bulldogs sew up rights to top seed for Southcentral Conference tournament

Posted: Sunday, October 22, 2006

The Nikiski High School volleyball team didn’t drop a game in winning two matches over the weekend, clinching the top seed for the Southcentral Conference tournament along the way.

“We have excellent team chemistry right now,” said Nikiski senior Clare Bennett. “We love playing together and we love how we complement each other on the court. It’s good to know we can play like that.”

The Bulldogs celebrated senior night on Friday with a three-game win over Grace Christian, 25-12, 25-18, 25-11. On Saturday, many of the Bulldogs’ younger players got a chance as Nikiski defeated Heritage Christian 25-16, 25-11, 25-19.

“I played my six seniors all the way around. They came out fired up. They played their best match of the season,” Nikiski coach Bruce King said of Friday’s match.

Bennett said it was a bittersweet night for her fellow seniors, Hannah Thompson, Sherra Pritchard, Kim Copeland, Kyla Jorgensen and Flossie Jorgensen. Bennett said the group helped rebuild the Nikiski program after a couple of down seasons.

“We were the debut of a new Nikiski volleyball team,” Bennett said.

Thompson led the team with 14 kills and 13 digs in Friday’s match. Pritchard had five kills to go with nine blocks, Flossie Jorgensen had six blocks and 10 digs, and Copeland finished with 13 digs. Setter Kyla Jorgensen was credited with 19 assists.

“We kept their offense off-balance with excellent spot-serving. We played just about error-free defense — that was huge for us,” King said.

In Saturday’s match with Heritage, Bennett had seven kills to go with six digs, and Thompson also picked up seven kills. Flossie Jorgensen had seven blocks, and Pritchard picked up five blocks to go with a pair of ace serves. Kyla Jorgensen picked up six assists, as did Hillary Bogard.

Bennett said it was good to be able to work in some players that hadn’t played with the varsity squad, and that the wins capped a good week.

Nikiski has one more conference match, at Seward Tuesday, before the conference tournament at Anchorage Christian Schools beginning Nov. 2.

“We’re really excited to get to the conference tournament and show everybody what we can do. Our goal is to get in the state tournament,” Bennett said. “I think we’re peaking right now. We’ve got great team chemistry. That’s a big part of our success — girls are really working well together.”

Seward 3, Heritage Christian 0

Grace Christian 3, Seward 0

The Seahawks split a pair of Southcentral Conference matches Friday and Saturday in Seward.

Friday, the Seahawks swept Heritage. Seward won 25-5, 25-11, 25-17.

Saturday, Grace Christian defeated Seward 28-26, 25-11, 25-16.

Will Morrow can be reached at will.morrow@peninsulaclarion.com.



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