Falcons lock in, secure sweep

A-P's Korryn Bellows places an attack during Wednesday's regional quarterfinal match with Belmond-Klemme in Parkersburg. (Jake Ryder photo)
Jake Ryder
Eclipse News-Review

PARKERSBURG – Aplington-Parkersburg volleyball showed the mental toughness necessary to close out a sweep of Belmond-Klemme in a Class 2A Region 5 quarterfinal on Wednesday, Oct. 21 in Parkersburg.

A-P won 25-15, 26-25, 25-5. The Falcons (17-11) play Lake Mills (24-9) at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 26 at A-P High School in a regional semifinal game.

Kasidy Mohwinkle had 15 kills, six digs and was 14-of-15 serving with an ace. Britney Gibson and Korryn Bellows contributed nine kills each and Kinsey Mohwinkle added seven kills and six digs.

Holding a 12-10 lead in the first set, A-P separated from the Broncos with an 11-2 run that earned the Falcons the first strike in the best-of-five. Five different attackers dropped at least one kill in the set as Libby Janssen, who had 37 assists in total on Wednesday, orchestrated the diverse offense.

"We had a lot of hot hitters tonight," said Gibson, an A-P senior. "Libby was doing a very good job setting and our passers were also doing a really good job tonight."

The Broncos bucked back in the second set, using a 6-1 run to get ahead 21-20 and then setting up set point at 24-23.

"I told the guys during the timeout that anything goes," A-P head coach Erin Huddleson said. "They've called their timeouts, we just need to be strong at the net and play our game."

A-P responded well, squaring the match at 24-all and then Kasidy Mohwinkle hammered a kill to set up set point for A-P at 25-24. Belmond-Klemme called timeout to try and stave off the momentum but the Broncos couldn't dig another Mohwinkle kill that earned the Falcons the 2-0 advantage.

"It was nothing really that they were doing, but more about what we were doing," Bellows said. "I feel like we weren't playing our regular game, where we have a lot of energy and are being smart with the ball and aggressive."

That narrow victory for A-P seemed to break B-K's will in the third set, opening a 12-3 lead that used up the Broncos' timeouts and sent the Falcons on their way.

After giving up points on attack errors in last Thursday's regular-season finale with BCLUW, Huddleson appreciated the control shown by many of the Falcon hitters.

 "We had some video on Belmond-Klemme, and I just told the girls that if the set isn't perfect or your body isn't in the right position or your arm's not there, aim for shots instead of just wailing on it," Huddleson said. "First and third set, we did a great job with that, and even part of the second set once we got back under control."

The Falcons get another home game in Monday's regional semifinal, and for seniors like Gibson and Bellows, that means everything in a season-long grind to prove themselves, even after finishing winless against the tough NICL East competition.

"We have so much chemistry among the team," Bellows said. "We come together, play our game and do what's best. I think we're most comfortable at home, and we're all super excited already, we just need to be loud, play our game and we should be excited and ready to go."


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