By ERIC X. VICCARO
The Valle Catholic High School volleyball team seems to be adjusting well to the new best-of-5 sets format.
Last year, the Missouri State High School Activities Association announced the best-of-3 style would be going by the wayside.
Valle Catholic head coach Nancy Fischer is pleased with how the Warriors have handled this adjustment.
“We have adapted very well to playing the 3-of-5 format,” Fischer explained. “All of our matches this year, save for one (the home match versus Festus), are being played using that format.”
Fischer said playing these individual weeknight matches with the best-of-5 format is logical — especially with postseason matches slated to use it.
Valle Catholic (16-2-2) defeated North County this past Thursday in three, winning by scores of 25-20, 25-20, 25-13.
“I felt the match with North County was very competitive,” Fischer stated. “Scores are sometimes not good indicators of the ‘closeness’ of a match. We were fortunate to play consistently good volleyball.”
Riley Siebert’s serving and stout defense — the Warriors had three players with double-digit digs in Makayla Joggerst (11), Sam Loida (11) and libero (10) — helped Valle Catholic win rather convincingly. Loida also supplied 33 assists.
Hannah Fowler finished off the Raiders in the second set with a cross-court kill, and the Warriors kept that momentum going in the third.
Mia Weiler, Siebert and Joggerst all had lengthy serving runs during the third set, and the Warriors were up 24-9. North County scored several points late; however, the Raiders committed a service error to give Valle Catholic the match.
Siebert finished with five ace serves and 17 overall points. Fowler was the top attacker, generating 10 kills and Haley Weibrecht nine. Ella Bertram also was a force on the front row, with six kills and six ace block assists.
Valle Catholic travelled to Fredericktown on Tuesday, Sept. 22, winning in three sets (25-19, 25-11, 25-14) and the Warriors dispatched St. Vincent in three (25-21, 25-8, 25-15) on Monday, Sept. 21.
This past weekend, Valle Catholic wrapped up a mighty busy week by playing in the Jackson Tournament — and the Warriors reached the Gold Bracket championship.
However, Advance topped the Warriors in two sets, 25-22, 25-15.
Siebert paced the Valle Catholic attack with six kills and six service points while Callie Naeger had a season-high seven digs.
Loida dished off 16 assists and had three ace block assists. Bertram also collected three ace block assists, and Joggerst chipped in with six digs to round out the numbers of note.