By Terri Seier
Wolfpack volleyball has been District Runner-Up for two consecutive years, but this year the volleyball girls are determined to make it to State Volleyball. However, they don’t start working towards their goal during the season; no, it all starts now.
On Wednesday, June 17, 2015, the volleyball girls had their first ever team camp this summer in Aurora with Shelli Mohnike. The camp’s main focus was on serving and passing. “Fundamentals are key. It all starts with getting your serve over, or getting the pass to your setter. If the serve falls short it’s a point for the other team, and without a good pass there can’t be a good kill.” Nicole Beckman, senior volleyball player, tells us. This is seen even in the season.
Most people see the great kill but none of that can happen without the hard work of the back row, the fundamentals.
When the camp started at nine o’ clock in the morning it started simple, going through the proper serving form, like any other camp does. However, Shelli didn’t stop with the form. She made sure to go around to each girl and give pointers and tips on how to improve. “She helps eliminate errors by working with the players slowly, and help them realize their mistakes so that they can improve. ” Nickol Payne, sophomore volleyball player, said when asked what she liked about Shelli’s teaching method.
The camp didn’t stop there. It went on to passing. Again Shelli showed the players proper form and went around giving advice to each girl individually. Shelli’s tips seemed like little changes here and there, but when it came down to serving or receiving just by taking their guide arm down and “elbowing their brother” or turning their shoulders a centimeter more made a big enough difference to land the ball where they wanted on the court. “Shelli works on the little things and those little things are what matter.” Jenna Parks, senior volleyball player, comments.
Suddenly, the last hour of the camp was upon them and everything the Wolfpack volleyball team learned was put together in a series of drills. It started off with just a serving drill called Jail, which Coach Thiele hopes to use as a drill during the season. It was about not only being able to make a serve over the net and in, but also spotting the serve so that in a game situation the server can find the weakest link in the other team’s serve-receive and land Ace serves all game. Another drill Shelli taught the volleyball team was Queen. This was a passing drill where the players had to serve-receive to the target and when they had a good pass they got a letter and the first player to spell Queen won. This helped with getting the players’ footwork down and getting to the ball while also working on keeping it under control. The last drill for the day was a mixture of passing and serving. It worked on the forms that were learned. The concept of the drill was to have one serve-receiver on each court while one server served to them until they got an ace serve and moved on to the next court until they got a total of four ace serves.
The morning may have started off rough when Terri Seier, senior volleyball player, overslept and had to hustle to Petersburg to catch the bus leaving, but it all worked out.
The volleyball girls had a great time working with Shelli and can’t wait to rejoin with her again on July 1 (today) to work on setting and hitting.
Jenna Parks sums up every player’s goal, that they are working so hard for now in one word — “State.”
On Wednesday, June 24 Elgin traveled to Norfolk to play the Impact. Elgin lost the game 4-13. Heather Bauer had a single and two RBI’s, Ally Wemhoff added a single and an RBI, Paige Meis, Anna Heilhecker and Grace Rittscher each had a single and Marie Meis had an RBI. Anna Heilhecker pitched for Elgin, walking two and striking out two.
Elgin traveled to O’Neill on Saturday, to play in the league tournament.
In their first game Elgin lost to Pierce 8-14. Hitting for Elgin were Ally Wemhoff with a double and an RBI, and Emma Kerkman, Grace Rittscher, Paige Meis and Anna Heilhecker each with a single and an RBI, and Calli Krebs with a single.
Anna Heilhecker took the pitching loss for Elgin. She struck out four and walked five.
Dropping to the loser’s bracket Elgin played Albion next losing a close game, 9-10. Getting hits for Elgin were Heather Bauer with two singles and two RBIs, Calli Krebs and Grace Rittscher with two singles each, Ally Wemhoff, Paige Meis and Anna Heilhecker each with a single and Emma Kerkman with an RBO.
Anna Heilhecker pitched again walking two and striking out seven.
One hundred is a milestone number in sports. Wilt Chamberlain scored 100 points in an NBA game. The 100-meter dash determines the fastest man and woman on the planet. Some restaurants offer free food if the local basketball team scores 100 points in a game. The number ‘100’ means a great deal to Pope John Athletic Director/Instructor Julie Burenheide and many of her friends.
During the month of June, Burenheide & Co. set out to walk 100 miles in 30 days. Starting on the first day of the month, Burenheide reached her goal on Monday night. Mission accomplished in 29 days!
“In late May a friend of mine from college (Chadron State) challenged me to walk 100 miles,” she said. “There’s a big group of us who decided we’re going to do it.”
She said Tuesday her goal starting out was to walk 3.5 miles per day. “Some days are better, some days are worse … It worked out great. The first week the kids had Totus Tuus so I walked while they were there. That was an easy first week to start out with.” She averaged five-to-six miles that week.
But it wasn’t always easy. Trips out-of-town, including the College World Series in Omaha, would make reaching her goal more challenging.
For the complete story see the print edition of The Elgin Review
June 26, 2015 by lmorgan · Comments Off
Conditions were ideal Sunday afternoon for a softball game, but not just any ordinary softball game played on Father’s Day.
The Diocese of Omaha, decked out in Royal Blue, took to the field Sunday afternoon to face the red-clad Lincoln Diocese in a game of slowpitch softball with proceeds to go to vocations and the Catholic faith in both diocese.
The spotlight shined on all the priests taking part in the I-80 Collar Series, but the spotlight may have shined most brightly for our own Father Ross Burkhalter of St. Boniface and St. Bonaventure Catholic Churches.
Burkhalter was just one of three members of the Omaha Diocese team who was not from a parish in Omaha. He represented rural Nebraska well.
In the second inning, with a runner on second base, Burkhalter singled to drive in Omaha’s first run of the game. He then came around to score.
Then, in the fourth inning, he singled again, and came around to score another run.
In his final at-bat, in the bottom of the sixth inning, Burkhalter lined a single to left field for his third hit of the game.
Playing in the game, for Burkhalter, was truly a once-in-a-lifetime moment.
“This was great to see this crowd come out, all out here for vocations, for priests,” he told The Elgin Review as the game concluded. “It’s fabulous. It’s great to see so many people from Elgin and other friends who stopped in too.”
The outcome was the only disappointment, he said.
“We’re getting clobbered, but we’re having fun … I don’t get out and play softball on a regular basis. The fact that I’m able to get out there, run around, catch a ball and hit. I’m amazed that I did as well as I did,” Father Burkhalter said. He wore #3 on his back, the same number that the mighty Babe Ruth once wore during his heyday with the New York Yankees.
Burkhalter’s efforts on the field couldn’t stop the Lincoln Diocese from posting a lop-sided 31 to 17 final score, claiming the first-ever victory in what promises to become an annual event. Lincoln never trailed in the six-inning game, scoring seven runs in the first inning to take control of the softball game.
Burkhalter shared “MVP” honors on the Omaha team with Fr. James Weeder of St. Margaret Mary in Omaha. Each played received a trophy. Earning honors for the Lincoln team were Fr. Nicholas Kipper of Cortland and Fr. Mark Cyza of Nebraska City.
With an estimated crowd of 7,000 filling nearly every seat at Werner Park in Papillion, site of the game, organizers are hoping next year’s game at possibly Haymarket Park in Lincoln will draw an even bigger crowd. Burkhalter said, if able, he hopes to take the field next year.
As much as the game was the story on the field, there was just as much excitement in the stands. Spirited fans from both teams not only cheered on the players, but their Catholic faith as well. At one time, between innings, the two sides engaged in a cheering contest saying “We love Jesus, yes we do. We love Jesus, how about you?”
Before the game, Mark and Julie Dwyer hosted a “tailgating” event in the F3 section of the parking lot. Burkhalter had a pre-game meal of a hamburger and a brat. “Credit goes to the great training table Mark had for me before the game,” he said.
In attendance were many fans from the Elgin area. Also watching from the stands, 13 rows behind the dugout was his mother.
A great day, a great game and a great time was enjoyed by all.
June 11, 2015 by lmorgan · Comments Off
On Tuesday, June 2 Elgin hosted the Impact from Norfolk and took a 12-0 loss. Elgin only had three singles in the game.
Hitting singles were Calli Krebs, Ally Wemhoff and Kaylee Martinsen. Elgin pitchers combined for nine walks and only one strikeout. On Monday, June 8, Elgin traveled to Albion and squeaked by with a 6-5 victory. Ally Wemhoff led Elgin with a single, a double and 3 RBI’s, Paige Meis added a single and an RBI and Kaylee Martinsen had an RBI. Ally Wemhoff started off pitching for Elgin, she walked three and struck out four. Anna Heilhecker finished the game walking four and striking out one.
Next action for Elgin will be tonight at 5 p.m. when they play Creighton in Neligh.