BY DAVE PEDERSEN
Even though Rockford recently lost three tough volleyball matches coach Jen Stoa proclaims how “We played some great volleyball.”
Rockford is 6-17 on the season, but contends in most every match. For example, the Rockets lost a five-game match to Watertown-Mayer, winning 25-17 and 25-15, while losing 25-15, 25-22 and 15-9. Lauren Enge had five serving aces. Ellen Paatela had 12 kills and Jordan Weeding had 10. Kaylee Schumacher contributed 27 assists.
Rockford also lost a close four-game match to Pierz last week. In game three the Rockets trailed 24-21, but came back to win 30-28. Games go to 25 points, but teams must win by two.
Weeding powered the offense with 21 kills, adding two solo blocks. Paatela had 12 kills and two ace serves. Emily Ebersbacher had a serving ace, two kills, and a block. Schumacher had 23 assists, while Sam Bagaason added 11.
Rockford opened the match against Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted with a 25-22 victory before losing 26-24, 25-19 and 25-21. Schumacher provided 30 set assists. Hitting leaders were Weeding (17) and Paatela (11).
The match was senior night when honored were Weeding, Paatela, Schumacher and Nicole Friedlein, who works as the Libero, a defensive specialist.
“We have great leadership from all four of our seniors,” said coach Jen Stoa. “They lead our team in many of the stat categories. More importantly, they lead our team with the intangibles of being positive, encouraging their teammates and having a strong work ethic.”
Weeding leads the Rockets with 240 total kills, while Paatela is second with 134. Weeding and Schumacher lead with 27 ace serves, while Friedlein has 22. Schumacher tops the team with 328 set assists. Serve reception leaders are Friedlein (426), Weeding (320) and Paatela (312). Friedlein also leads Rockford in digs.
Weeding is currently ranked high in the state in kills. Stoa says her senior is a very smart player who sees and reads the court very well.
“Jordan is also a great leader,” notes Stoa. “Her competitive spirit, energy and passion for volleyball are infectious.”
Stoa notes how each of the seniors is a great role model. She adds, “They have focused on putting the team first, making an atmosphere of trust and encouragement. I am very proud of each of the seniors and their accomplishments.”