Hopkins put its undefeated volleyball record to its first real test Tuesday and aced it, beating host Wayzata, a Lake Conference rival and top 10 team in Class 3A, 21-25, 25-21, 25-23, 22-25, 15-12.
While Wayzata had played a number of tough matches so far this season, including facing highly regarded Lakeville South twice, Hopkins went into the match knowing this would be its biggest test to date. The Royals, led by stellar 6-3 outside hitter Jasmyn Martin, showed the kind of fight that coach Vicki Seliger Swenson wanted.
After losing the first set, they leaned on Martin to square the match in the second set. But it was the Royals’ resilience in the third set that swung the match in their favor. Trailing 20-13, they rallied to win that set 25-23 and did it largely on the strength of players other than Martin. She did have four kills in the set, but setter Tara Lee was distributing the ball adeptly, with hitters Greta Werner and Anna Erickson the main beneficiaries.
“That third set was huge,” Seliger Swenson said. “Regardless of how that set came out, they showed a lot of fight.”
Wayzata responded with a fourth-set victory, but Hopkins (6-0) jumped on the Trojans quickly in the deciding fifth set, taking a 4-0 lead and finishing in style with another powerful kill from Martin, who will be taking her talents to the University of Minnesota next season.
“We really haven’t been tested like Wayzata has this season,” Seliger Swenson said. “This was our first one, and we showed a lot of grit. I’m just so proud of all of them.”
Waconia 3, Bethlehem Academy 0: Taylor Wolf recorded 12 kills and 18 assists to help the Wildcats sweep the Cardinals 25-19, 25-21, 25-18. The Cardinals, the No. 1 team in Class 1A, fought back in a tough second set, but fell behind after two strong Estelle Marker kills. Wolf had four kills to fuel an eight-point run in the third set to clinch the victory. Payton Nutter led the Cardinals with 10 kills.
Visitation 1, Holy Angels 0: Maggie Conners scored the only goal of the match to lead the No. 6-1A Blazers past the No. 7-1A Stars. The second-half goal was her 16th of the season. Samantha Burke, who made nine saves, posted her fourth shutout of the year. The Stars’ Sheridan Thorp had eight saves.