The usual attack wasn't working. So Lakeville North hung around, made some adjustments and eventually pulled away to beat Eagan 25-18, 21-25, 25-23, 25-20 to win the 3A, Section 3 championship for the third consecutive season.
In a match that would have been fitting for a state tournament final, No. 2-ranked Eagan gave the No. 1-ranked Panthers different looks, a determined block and a whole lot of worries. Lakeville North had won the previous match between the two, also in four sets, but this time around things were much closer.
"That is a very good team, and they changed up their defense from the first time we played them," said Alyssa Goehner, Lakeville North's fabulous outside hitter. "But we hung close and got a few points and our defense was phenomenal."
While Goehner accounted for 28 kills, the continued focus on stopping her allowed the rest of the Panthers roster to step forward. Setter Erica Handley was creative around the net, outside hitter Hailey Lonergan put down some key kills from the right side, and the defense, led by Laura Larson and Abby Monson, refused to let balls hit the floor.
"We have an amazing defense," said Monson. "We communicate with each other and we're always helping each other out."
Eagan coach Kathy Gillen-Melville conceded that her Wildcats could hardly have played better.
"I don't know what more we could do," said Gillen-Melville. "They have Alyssa, and it makes a difference when you have a player like that. We played well, but they were better."
|Philadelphia||0||Top 7th Inning|
|Pittsburgh||2||Top 6th Inning|
|St. Louis||1||Bottom 5th Inning|
|Boston||3||Bottom 7th Inning|
|Detroit||0||Bottom 6th Inning|
|Toronto||2||Bottom 6th Inning|
|Tampa Bay||0||Top 7th Inning|
|Atlanta||0||Top 7th Inning|
|San Diego||3:05 PM|
|San Francisco||3:05 PM|
|Chicago WSox||3:05 PM|
|Miami||70||4th Qtr 11:19|
|Oklahoma City||2:30 PM|
|St. Louis||7:00 PM|
|Los Angeles||7:00 PM|
|Syracuse||31||1st Half 0:37|
|Saint Louis||33||1st Half 0:38|
|Mercer||24||1st Half 5:11|
|Fla Gulf Coast||13|
|Indiana State||18||1st Half 5:55|
|Northeastern||7||1st Half 12:33|
|La Salle||3:00 PM|
|Michigan State||3:30 PM|
|William & Mary||4:00 PM|
|Penn State||4:15 PM|
|Western Carolina||5:00 PM|
|Boston College||5:00 PM|
|South Dakota||6:00 PM|
|Ga Southern||7:30 PM|
|Western Ill||8:30 PM|
|South Dakota St|
|Western Ill||91||2nd Half 3:24|
|Seton Hall||56||2nd Half 2:40|
|(23) Iowa||63||2nd Half 0:25|
|New Hampshire||34||2nd Half 12:37|
|Rider||35||2nd Half 16:09|
|Long Island||31||2nd Half|
|Mount St Marys||36|
|Western Carolina||22||1st Half 8:45|
|South Florida||2:00 PM|
|Sacred Heart||2:00 PM|
|(18) Oklahoma St||2:00 PM|
|Missouri State||2:05 PM|
|(12) Kentucky||2:30 PM|
|(7) West Virginia|
|St Francis-NY||5:00 PM|
|(10) Duke||6:00 PM|
|(2) Notre Dame|