On Thursday, Oct. 15, Rockford hosted the Grandville Bulldogs in a OK Red conference volleyball match. It was a night to also honor the seniors.
The match started out introducing the seniors. Kylie Basarabski (#7, middle hitter) plans to attend either Northern Michigan University or Southern Indiana University to study radiology. Dana Girolami (#4, defensive specialist) is undecided on what college to attend, but wants to go into nursing. Captain Cailie Johnson (#1, outside hitter) plans to attend Grand Valley State University to major in political science and play volleyball. Jenna Lysne (#3, defensive specialist) plans to attend Northern Michigan University, but has not decided a major. Captain Ali Prus (#8, defensive specialist) plans to attend Elmhurst College to study urban missions and social work. Kim Weaver (#6, setter) is undecided on what college she will attend. It was also announced that some of the accomplishments of these seniors include three straight district championships, academic all state every year, and 127 wins.
The first game saw Rockford and Grandville battling back and forth right down to the wire as each team held serve for game point. Rockford fell behind 24-25 with Grandville having set point and serving. However, some great net play by Rockford’s front line blockers kept Grandville from winning the first game. Grandville had game point twice, but was stopped by a front line consisting of Basarabski, Andrea Kacsits and Johnson.
Rockford finally won the first game with some greats sets from Weaver, and kills from Johnson and Kacsits. Lysne had her jump serve working almost to perfection.
The second game saw Rockford turn up the heat on Grandville as Rockford won 25-7, with help from Nicole Czehowski, Jessica Majerle and Murphy Heyer. Rockford’s front line net players shut down Grandville’s kill attempts with key blocks and great back row digs and passes from Heather Gates, Ali Prus, Sidney Rodriguez, Morgan Denham and Dana Girolami. Libaro Halle Peterson was all over the floor all three games, making great plays.
The key to winning volleyball games is to make good passes from the back row to the setting and then the setter making good sets. Rockford did that the last two games.
Rockford closed out the night to take the last game by a score of 25-18.
On the night, the Rams were led by seniors Johnson with eight kills, Weaver with 21 assists, and six service aces from Lysne.
Rockford’s next big test will be Thursday, Oct. 22 when they travel to Hudsonville to play a very hot team. Hudsonville beat first-place OK Red leader and one of the state’s top-rated Division I volleyball teams, Jenison, in three sets and are the defending state champions. Play starts at 6:30 p.m.