Grand Rapids, Ely volleyball heading to state tournament

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Saturday marked the section 7A, 7AA, and 7AAA finals in prep volleyball.

In section 7A No.1 Ely took on No.1 Floodwood.

Ely came out victorious with a 3-1 win with match scores of 25-22, 22-25, 25-10, 25-13.

Hannah Penke lead the team with a total of 19 kills. The team now heads to state with an undefeated record of 29-0.

“I think our confidence have gone went up way up since like last year and just like our calmness on the court and we just play together super well. We just have a mix that we all play so well, I couldn’t ask for anything else,” said Penke.

“These girls have just played together from the start and that’s something that we worked really hard towards this year. It’s not something you can really coach. They have to kind of come together and pull themselves together,” added Ely head coach.

In section 7AA No. 3 Esko faced off against No1 Rush City.

Esko would drop the first two sets 25-18 and 25-16, before winning the next two 19-25 and 14-25 forcing a fifth set.

The Eskomos however fell 15-7, 3-2 in the game.

In 7AAA No.1 Grand Rapids took the court against No.2 Cloquet.

The Thunderhawks were lead by Kyra Giffen who had 13 kills as they won in straight sets 25-11, 25-15 and 25-18.

“We really talked about just playing our game and making sure that they were confident in themselves and playing point by point, and they definitely did that,” said head coach Rebekah Sutherland.

“These girls are all my best friends and obviously it just won’t be the same. I’ve been playing with them since I was in elementary school, so it’s so fun. But obviously I’m so excited that we were able to do this because we don’t want to season the end yet. I’m so happy that we’re here. They’re all my best friends, I love them so much,” concluded junior Braya LaPlant.