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Lady Indians Third in Gove County Classic

The Lady Indians earned a third-place finish in the Gove County Classic Volleyball Tournament on Saturday, September 14. The Lady Indians played five matches during the day, winning three. St. Francis opened with a loss to undefeated Golden Plains falling 13-25, 18-25. St. Francis then won their next two pool play matches over Greeley County (25-21, 25-19) and Weskan (25-20, 25-17). The 2-1 record in pool play advanced the Lady Indians into championship bracket play where they faced undefeated Wheatland-Grinnell. St. Francis lost to the Lady Thunderhawks in two sets 14-25, 15-25. St. Francis defeated Decatur Community 25-21, 25-14 in the third place match securing a third place finish in the competition.

Golden Plains

For the first two matches of the day, St. Francis played without the services of two senior starters, Alondra Gomez and Hannah Zimbal, who were taking the ACT test during the morning hours. The girls returned to compete throughout the rest of the tournament. Golden Plains (GP), 10-0 entering the day, was the Lady Indians; initial opponent. Though the Lady Indians did many good things during the match, they also appeared a bit unsure at times without their normal lineup. An early run by the Lady Bulldogs moved the score to 2-5 with the GP earning two kills by 5' 7" senior Mabel Lugo and one by 6' 0" senior Zoey Hillis enroute. The run ended with a missed serve by the Lady Bulldogs. Soon, GP reeled off a 9-point run. Though St. Francis used both of their time-outs attempting to stop the run. the Lady Buldogs soon led 3-14. In the run, Lugo earned another kill as did 5' 4" sophomore Kassie Miller. Morgan Wark (5' 6" So.) also served an ace. The rest of the points came on SF errors. Emma Johnson's stuff-block ended the run, but the Lady Indians missed their service attempt. A 3-point SF run, including two kills by Mia Morrow, trimmed the margin to 10-17. Another Lugo kill ended the SF run. Trailing by nine (10-19) the Lady Indians earned their second 3-point run on two GP miscues and a kill by Johnson. The 13-20 deficit was as close as the Lady Indians would get in game one. The Lady Bulldogs won the next five volleys to close the set. All of the volleys ended on Lady Indian miscues. St. Francis lost set one 13-25.

Game two was very smiliar. Golden Plains raced out to a 0-10 lead before an over-set tip by Emma Johnson ended the extended run. During the run, GP scored on three kills; two by Zoey Hillis and one by 5' 7" junior Ashley Stoll, as well as an ace by Kassie Miller. A kill by Rian Zimbal off a set by Jordyn Faulkender gave the Lady Indians their second point. The next GP run, 3 points in length, moved the score to 2-13 and included a kill by Mabel Lugo. St. Francis called time-out to regroup. The Lady Indians returned to the floor to earn a 3-point run featuring an off-the-block kill by Faulkender, an over-pass kill by Faulkender, and a stuff by Johnson. Three miscues by SF and another Lugo kill (on an over-pass) increased the margin to a larger deficit (5-17). The Lady Indians continued to scrap and eventually earned a five-point run that triggered a GP time-out at 10-17. In the run, Johnson and Faulkender each earned kills and Mia Morrow served an ace. Jesslynn Houtman's over-set kill started another SF run of four points. The run included a stuff-block by Houtman and eventually narrowed the deficit to 15-19. A 3-point GP run featuring an ace by Hillis placed Golden Plains back in full control (15-22). Two GP errors and a dump-set by Johnson narrowed by margin to 18-23, but the Lady Bulldogs held off the Lady Indian rally to win 18-25.

Greeley County

Mia Morrow scored on a tip to open set one against Greeley County (GC), but the score soon evened when the Lady Indians missed their first serve of the set. Kills by Morrow (2) and Emma Johnson soon moved the score to 4-1. An over-set kill by 5' 10" sophomore Myra Reynolds and an ace by 5' 2" junior Claudia Mancia narrowed the advantage to one (5-4). A kill by Jordyn Faulkender followed, but the Lady Indians missed another serve slowing momentum. A tip-kill by Johnson preceded three consecutive attack errors by SF allowing GC to take a one-point lead (7-8). Jesslynn Houtman's kill tied the match at 8-all and ignited a 4-point SF run that included two more Houtman kills and one by Morrow. The run was also aided by some consistent serving by Kattie Wurm. A setting error ended the run, but the Lady Indians followed with a 3-point run featuring kills by Morrow and Faulkender. The scoreboard now showed 14-9. Unfortunately, another missed serve ended this run. Johnson won a joust at the net returning the margin to four points (15-11) a short time later. An ace by GC's Mancia was followed by two SF errors tying the set at 17-all. St. Francis called time-out to discuss strategy. The Lady Indians lead again, but as the teams traded miscues, the score became tied once more on a GC tip at 20-20. Again, St. Francis called time-out. After returning to the floor, the Lady Indians earned four consecutive points receiving some nice serves by Wurm and a kill from Morrow. St. Francis won set on 25-21.

St. Francis jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the second set earning a net violation and kills by Jordyn Faulkender and Mia Morrow. A kill by 5' 5" GC sophomore Grace Whitham narrowed the advantage to 6-5, and an ace by 5' 6' senior Maddie Brandl tied the contest at 6-all. Brandl missed her next serve returning the lead to the Lady Indians. A stuff-block by Emma Johnson gave SF a two-point advantage (9-7). Another missed serve by the Lady Indians allowed GC to pull within one before a kill by Morrow moved the score to 11-9. A kill by Brandl tied the set at 11-all. The teams then exchanged missed serves. Morrow's ace gave SF a slim one-point lead and was soon followed by a down-the-line kill by Kattie Wurm. An attack error by GC increased the SF lead to three (16-13), but again, the Lady Indians missed a serve; their 6th of the match. Thankfully, the Lady Jackrabbits returned the favor on their service attempt. A tip-kill by senior Kamryn Youmans narrowed the margin to 17-16, but was quickly followed by another service error by the Lady Rabbits. An over-pass kill by Jesslynn Houtman increased the advantage to three and was soon followed by an aggressive Morrow kill moving the score to 21-17. After a lift call on the Lady Indians, GC missed their 8th serve of the match. Ellee Krien followed with an ace for the Lady Indians, and GC called time-out. It was too late. St. Francis scored kills on the next two volleys, and Morrow served an ace to seal the game. St. Francis won game two 25-19.


Weskan earned a quick 3-point lead on two SF attack errors and an ace by sophomore Bria Allen. A first-ball-over kill by Emma Johnson ended the run, but the Lady Coyotes capitalized on several SF miscues to lead 1-6. The action caused SF to use their first time-out early in the set. Action including an ace by Mia Morrow, a kill by Rian Zimbal and a kill by Johnson narrowed the deficit to 7-8, but a missed served stalled the Lady Indians' momentum. Another kill by Rian Zimbal was followed by one from sister Hannah tying the set at 9-all. Unfortunately, another missed serve returned the lead to Weskan. St. Francis' first lead of the match came at 11-10 on a kill by Morrow. A couple SF miscues soon returned the lead to Weskan. A three-point SF run including two aggressive kills by Johnson gave the Lady Indians a 19-15 advantage. Johnson's next kill moved the scoreboard to 20-16. A Weskan run including an ace and kill by junior JC Allen tied the set at 20-all, and triggered the second SF time-out. St. Francis returned to the floor to score on the next five volleys. Johnson earned a kill and an ace in the closing action. St. Francis won set one 25-20.

Emma Johnson opened set two scoring on a dump-set. A stuff-block by JC Allen gave Weskan a brief advantage but soon a kill by Mia Morrow returned the lead to the Lady Indians. Plagued by missed serves throughout the day, the Lady Indians missed another serve, but Johnson's over-set tip soon returned the lead to SF. Morrow followed with an ace, but then missed her next serve. A dump-set by Karly Bandel moved the scoreboard to 6-4. A kill by Jordyn Faulkender increased the margin to 9-5. A Morrow kill increased the Lady Indian lead to five (12-7), but was followed by another missed service attempt. A three-point Weskan run, featuring a strong kill by JC Allen narrowed the gap to 13-11. St. Francis responded well, earning a 5-point run moving the score to 18-11. The run was aided by two aces by Ellee Krien and kills by Rian Zimbal and Emma Johnson. A kill by Johnson was followed by a Johnson ace moving the margin to 22-13. Another missed serve, the 9th in the match for the Lady Indians, slowed the momentum. Weskan capitalized earning a 4-point run including a kill by junior Blakely Aldridge and an ace by junior Stephany Rother. St. Francis closed the set with three consecutive points resulting from kills by H. Zimbal, Faulkender, and Morrow. St. Francis won set two 25-17.


Wheatland-Grinnell (WG) entered bracket-play undefeated on the day earning the #1 position in Pool A. St. Francis, placing #2 in Pool B was their first opponent in the championship bracket. The Lady Thunderhawks wasted little time demonstrating their skills as Thunderhawk senior Jordyn Vincent (5' 8") hammered a spike to the floor on the first swing by WG. Trailing 0-2, St. Francis earned a 4-point run to take a two-point early lead. In the run, Karly Bandel served an ace and Mia Morrow recorded a kill. Vincent's kill ended the run, but was answered by another from Morrow. After a kill by WG's Livia Schulz (5' 9" senior), Hannah Zimbal nailed a spike moving the score to 8-5. Morrow followed with another kill giving the Lady Indians their largest lead of the match (9-5) . Wheatland-Grinnell scored the next 10 points to lead 9-15. In the action, Jessica Heier (5' 4" senior) earned two kills, Morgan Zimmerman (5' 2" senior) had two kills, Schultz served two aces, and Isabella Ostmeyer (5' 8" sophomore) scored a point. The Lady Thunderhawks were getting excellent play throughout their lineup. An over-set tip and a stuff-block by Hannah Zimbal narrowed the margin to 12-16, but soon another run of 6 points placed the Lady Indians at a large deficit (13-24). The latest run included a thunderous kill by Kirsten Schroeder (5' 9" junior), an ace by Zimmerman, and an over-pass kill by Vincent. Emma Johnson recorded a kill to end the run, but the Lady Indians lost game one 14-25.

Hanna Zimbal scored on kill to earn St. Francis their first point, but several attack errors still had the Lady Indians trailing 1-4. After a missed serve by WG, the Lady Thunderhawks earned a 5-point run to move the scoreboard to 2-9. The run included two kills by Jordyn Vincent and a stuff by Kirsten Schroeder. A series of excellent plays by both teams advanced the score. Schroeder's over-pass kill was answered by an over-set kill by Hannah Zimbal. Livia Schultz's kill was followed by another from Morgan Zimmerman. Emma Johnson then earned a stuff against Zimmerman, but Jessia Heier answered with another kill for WG. St. Francis was losing the battle 5-13. Zimmerman's along-the-net tip was followed by an ace by Heier increasing the margin to 10 points (6-16). St. Francis used a time-out and returned to the floor to earn a kill by Mia Morrow.Though the Lady Indians missed consecutive serves, they soon earned a 5-point run to narrow the margin to 13-17. In the run, Karly Bandel served two aces and Morrow earned a stuff vs Schroeder. It was as close as the Lady Indians would get. Two more runs by WG soon closed the match at 15-25.

Decatur Community

Decatur Community was defeated by Golden Plains in the second championship bracket play match. Decatur County and St. Francis then matched up in the third place contest. St. Francis earned the first point of the match on a stuff by Hannah Zimbal. Decatur Community's (DC) Anna Carter 9 (6' 1" senior) answered with a thunderous kill on the next volley. A stuff and a second kill by Carter moved the set to 1-4. St. Francis closed within one twice; once on a kill by Zimbal and once on a dump-set by Emma Johnson before tiying the match at 5-all on an ace by Mia Morrow. Two SF attack errors and an ace by Carter soon placed the Lady Indians at a 3-point deficit (5-8). Two dump-set points, one by Karly Bandel and one by Johnson, narrowed the margin, but a strong kill by Alyssa Van Vleet (5' 9" senior) placed the Red Devils back in front by three. St. Francis then used a time-out for strategy. SF trailed by as many as four (11-15), but earned a four-point run receiving two aces from Morrow during the action to tie the set at 16-all. DC then used a time-out attempting to slow the Lady Indians' momentum. Tied at 19-all, the Lady Indians earned a 5-point run to stretch the margin to 24-19. During the run, Jordyn Faulkender earned two kills and Morrow had two kills. St. Francis won set one 25-21.

The Lady Indians opened set two with a 5-point run getting a powerful kill from Mia Morrow to open the set. Jordyn Faulkender then added two kills and Hannah Zimbal chipped in an ace. A kill by DC's Breyana Gehring (5' 9" freshman) ended the run. The Lady Red Devils soon had the set tied at 5 with a 5-point run of their own. The set would be tied at 6 and 7, before the Lady Indians scored their next run. Five consecutive points beginning with a DC missed serve placed SF in control. This run included a kill by Emma Johnson, two aces by Alondra Gomez, and a dump-set by Karly Bandel. After a SF attack error, the Lady Indians reeled off 4 more points to move the score to 16-8. This run included another missed serve by the Lady Devils and an over-poss tip by Zimbal. Kills by Faulkender, Morrow, and Bandel; as well as two aces by Bandel soon stretched the margin to 23-12. Though Anna Carter earned to points late in the contest with strong net play, St. Francis won the match 25-14.

Scoring Summary

Wheatland-Grinnell won the tournament championship defeating Golden Plains in two sets. It was the first defeat for the Lady Bulldogs this season. GP is now 14-1.

Below are the match scores for the Gove County Classic Tournament.

Pool A at Wheatland High School

Wheatland/Grinnell vs. Quinter 25-13, 25-9

Decatur Community vs. Cheylin 25-21, 25-16

Wheatland/Grinnell vs. Cheylin 25-11, 25-20

Quinter vs. Decatur Community 15-25, 15-25

Wheatland/Grinnell vs. Decatur Community 23-25, 25-11, 25-22

Quinter vs. Cheylin 13-25, 14-25

Pool B at Grinnell Middle School

Golden Plains vs. St. Francis 25-13, 25-18

Greeley County vs. Weskan 18-25, 25-15, 25-22

Golden Plains vs. Weskan 26-24, 25-13

Greeley County vs. St. Francis 21-25, 19-25

Golden Plains vs. Greeley County 25-17, 25-17

Weskan vs. St. Francis 20-25, 17-25

Consolation Bracket at Grinnell Middle School

Greeley County vs Quinter 25-22, 19-25, 25-12

Cheylin vs. Weskan 7-25, 22-25

7th & 8th Place Game

Cheylin vs. Quinter 20-25, 18-25

5th & 6th Place Game

Greeley County vs. Weskan 25-23, 25-20

Championship Bracket at Wheatland High School

Wheatland/Grinnell vs. St. Francis 25-14, 25-15

Golden Plains vs. Decatur Community 25-16, 25-12

3rd & 4th Place Game

Decatur Community vs. St. Francis  21-25, 14-25

Championship Game

Wheatland/Grinnell vs. Golden Plains 25-15, 25-12

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