The Seward Bluejays showed why they’re ranked No. 9 in Class B as they rolled past Schuyler on Oct. 5.
Seward took the match 25-6, 25-5, 25-14 in Schuyler, dropping the Lady Warriors to 7-10 on the season. The Bluejays improved to 16-5.
The Central Conference clash was played in front of a raucous and supportive Warrior crowd, but the Bluejays took control at the beginning of the first set and never let up.
Schuyler head coach Jenna Saalfeld thought her girls would fare better in the match.
“I was a little disappointed with the girls and the way they played tonight. They did not show up to play,” she said. “We did lots of scouting on Seward and knew where they were going to hit and who their big hitters were, but the girls struggled to get going.”
Saalfed did see positive aspects from her team’s effort late in the match.
“I was proud that during the third set we didn’t just give up entirely,” she said. “The girls did fight back a little bit.”
Seward’s Camryn Opfer dominated offensively in the first set and Lena Hughes provided several key blocks as the Bluejays stormed out to a 21-4 lead. Kameryn Healy had a couple of nice kills in the first set for the Lady Warriors, but it was not enough to keep Schuyler in contention.
The second set featured much of the same. Two blocks and two kills by Seward’s Rebekah Klenke enabled the Bluejays to run to an early 10-1 lead. Schuyler’s Rachel Shonka showed some nice play at the net with two kills in the set.
It looked like Seward was going to make short work of SCHS in the third set as the visitors stormed out to another 11-2 lead, but Schuyler was able to hold the deficit to nine at 15-6.
Kelsie Zadina’s kill made it 23-10 in favor of Seward before the Lady Warriors got two strong blocks from sophomore Kinzie Petersen and another kill by Shonka to cut the deficit to 23-13. Seward finished the set and match with a kill by Aubrey Cepek to send the Bluejays home with the victory.
“We need to continue to work on communication on the court and working together as a team,” Saalfeld said. “If they can learn to work together as one team and not as six individuals, they could still have a great end to their season.”
The Lady Warriors will compete Thursday in the Central Conference Tournament in Grand Island. They are scheduled to play Grand Island Northwest at 5 p.m. and York at 6 p.m. The tournament finals will be held Saturday.
Schuyler returns home Tuesday for a triangular with Madison and Humphrey St. Francis.