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Blazers sweeps Lady Spartans at home

Solon volleyball season wraps up Oct. 5 at Central DeWitt
Left: Solon freshman Lauren Schrock goes up for a kill attempt against Dyersville Beckman Sept. 26 in Solon. Schrock had four kills in the 3-0 loss to the Blazers. (photo by Doug Lindner)

SOLON– The Lady Spartan varsity volleyball team won’t be able to finish with a perfect home record.
Solon was swept by Dyersville Beckman (25-12, 25-17, 25-16) Sept. 26, the same night of the team’s annual cancer awareness fundraiser and Future Spartan night.
The Lady Spartans host only three home matches this season, winning against Anamosa Aug. 31, and welcoming Western Dubuque for Senior Night Oct. 3.
“The community was amazing with the fundraiser– we don’t have any numbers just yet, but every silent auction item has been paid for and picked up, the T-shirt sales alone were a couple hundred dollars and just packing the gym was pretty great,” said Solon Head Volleyball Coach Sarah Ferin. “Solon has one of the most supportive communities and great school spirit. I was really proud to have so many seventh and eighth grade players with us as well– our program is going in the right direction!”
But the Lady Spartans were unable to get much going offensively against the Blazers.
“Our hitting was pretty rough and defensively we didn’t do much, pretty flat-footed,” Ferin said. “At least this is the midway point, so we know what has to change before regional play.”
Solon connected with only 26 of its 98 attacks, led by senior Grace Keith with eight. Junior Abby Smith added six. Junior Rachael Nelson had 22 of the team’s 23 assists.
Junior Taylor Moore led the team with 15 digs, and was 12-12 from the service line. Junior Kate Benzing had all three of the team’s solo blocks.
The Lady Spartans welcomed back junior Raysa Garbes, who had been sidelined with a head injury.
“Tuesday night was Raysa’s first time back so we just have to get used to her sets again and gel better as a team with the lineup changes,” Ferin said.
Ferin inserted Garbes into the lineup several times during a Sept. 30 tournament at Waverly-Shell Rock.
Solon went 2-4 at the tournament, falling to No. 7 (3A) Osage (22-20, 21-18), No. 3 (4A) Waverly-Shell Rock (21-10, 21-16) and No. 3 (2A) Grundy Center (21-16, 21-13), but ended the day with wins against Mason City (25-18, 25-17) and Denver (25-16, 26-24).
“Waverly started out rough in the morning,” Ferin said. “We did not perform like we should have against Waverly or Nevada. Things picked up in the afternoon pool. We didn’t beat Osage, but we were really close, and we played an amazing game. Grundy Center we slipped up a bit before getting back together for the final two teams. We learned a lot from this tournament and will have some lineup changes Tuesday night.”
The Lady Spartans face Central DeWitt on the road Oct. 5 for the final match of the regular season. The WaMaC Conference Tournament begins Saturday, Oct. 7, at Center Point, with pool play Thursday, Oct. 12, in Marion.