Wolfpack Win NVC Tourney Opener Over Cyclones

ELGIN — Seeking to win the NVC Conference Tournament this week, Elgin Public-Pope John started their march with a sweep of Clearwater/Orchard Monday night.
Playing on their home court, the once-beaten Wolfpack defeated the Cyclones 25-10, 25-20 and 25-9.
The Cyclones entered the match, having defeated West Holt in five games. It showed on the court as the Wolfpack came out strong, building an 18 to 6 lead in the first game. Leading the way was junior Grace Henn with four kills, Amy Nelson had two. On defense, Paige Meis had a solo block. On game point, Meis teamed up with Elizabeth Selting for a block at the net.
Game #2 started out the same way as EPPJ took a six to one lead as Henn, Nelson and Selting dominated the net. The Cyclones rallied to tie the score at 13-all as Grace Rittscher and Jocee Johnston had ace serves.
Baylee Wemhoff’s serving provided the Wolfpack with a boost as she had three consecutive ace serves to give EPPJ a lead they would not relinquish. Meis closed out the game with a kill after the Cyclones had cut the margin to 24 to 20.
Game #3 looked like target practice for the Wolfpack as Calli Krebs and Ally Wemhoff each had three service points. After the Cyclones cut the lead to 12 to 4, Wolfpack libero Jordan Mescher strung together four service points to make the score 16 to 4.
The teams traded points before Wolfpack sophomore Anna Heilhecker came off the bench to notch two service points, the second coming on a kill by Nicki Payne.
Junior Lydia Behnk then put an exclamation point on the match with a kill on match point to seal the victory.
For the match, the Wolfpack were 63 of 70 in attacks with 34 kills. Leading the way was Nelson with 10 kills, Selting added nine, Henn added eight followed by Meis with four, Behnk, Payne and Baylee Wemhoff each had one. The Cyclones were led by Jocee Johnston with six.
EPPJ was strong from the service line, making 65 of 69 serves. Baylee Wemhoff had the team’s lone ace serve. Johnson led the Cyclones with two ace serves.
Nelson led the Wolfpack with four solo blocks, Meis had three and Selting posted two.
Krebs had a team-high 10 digs for EPPJ, Mescher had eight while Allyson Wemhoff and Baylee Wemhoff each had three. Kinzly Macke led the Cyclones with nine.
Baylee Wemhoff led Wolfpack setters with 15 set assists, Allyson Wemhoff had five and Payne added four. Peyton Clifton led the Cyclones with 10.
Mescher led the Wolfpack in serve receive with 11. Kylie Thiele led the Cyclones with 28.
The victory boosted the Wolfpack’s record to 25-1, the Cyclones fell to 15-13 with the loss.