By DAVE PEDERSEN
Crow River News Sports
Already slowed by injuries, Rockford’s volleyball team was missing a few more starters in action last week due to more.
The Rockets defeated Heritage Christian 3-0 before losing to Washburn 3-0 and Dassel-Cokato 3-0. Rockford also entered the Becker tournament, going 2-2, losing to Rush City and Unity and defeating Aitken and Becker.
Coach Jennifer Milton said hitter Lauren Klaith has been out with injury since last week but started to make her way back into rotation on the weekend.
Senior defensive specialist Taylor Tody also returned after sitting out a few matches. However, other players were leaving the lineup on a team that is 9-9 overall.
The top setter and hitter, Molly Schultz, went down with an ankle injury during the Washburn game. In her absence, Milton says Sydney Yakesh has done a nice job stepping up and running the offense as the sole setter.
The coach adds how senior Nicole Steenstra has done a great job stepping up as a starting outside hitter to be a consistent offensive threat.
“While injuries are frustrating the girls have done well adjusting to changes, stepping up to fill in the holes and supporting each other,” said Milton. “For example, we lost junior hitter Molly Nooyen to an injury in our first game of the Becker tournament. Eighth-grader Sophie Bremel played outside hitter in Nooyen’s absence and did a great job.”
Against Heritage, Christian Nooyen had six kills and three blocks. Steenstra led with six kills. Schultz had five kills and 15 set assists. Madelyn Hudlow provided five ace serves, while Sam FitzSimmons added three ace serves. Ellie Wanous had five kills and four blocks. Madeline Altmann also had five kills and Yakesh had 10 set assists.
In the loss to Dassel-Cokato, Nooyen powered the offense with 11 kills, followed by Altmann and Steenstra with six each. Yakesh led with 20 set assists.
Altmann led the offense with seven kills against Washburn. Schultz had seven assists and four kills and Steenstra added five kills. Wanous blocked three shots and FitzSimmons had three ace serves.
Rockford plays at home against Glencoe-Silver Lake, 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5 and goes to face Mound-Westonka, Tuesday, Oct. 10 at Mound-Westonka.