By Tiffany L. Rehbein
Six-foot-1 sophomore Adrienne Poplawski was named to the All-Tournament team at the Jamestown Classic in North Dakota where the MSU-Northern Skylights split matches over the weekend.
With Adrienne making this team with the teams that were there, its great, said head coach Lisa Handley. She couldnt have done it without her passers and her setter. Its a recognition shared with the team.
Poplawski had 53 kills and hit .353 on the weekend.
The Skylights opened against Bethel College of Minnesota and dropped the match in five games Friday.
We had them, said Handley. We played really well the first three games, but in games four and five, we let it slide a little bit.
Bethel won 11-15, 16-14, 5-15, 15-9, 15-9.
Bethel is not a very big team, but theyre a scrappy team, Handley said. They were very quick and once their passing was on, their offense ran pretty smoothly.
The Skylights tallied their highest hitting percentage of the year at .253. The Skylights also notched 70 digs in the match.
Lyndi Hostetter led the Skylights defensively with 15, but was joined in double figures by Melanie Baack with 14, Jessica Gerenz with 12, Heather Hammonds with 10 and Jennifer Sanders with 11.
This was one of our best defensive games I felt that we played, Handley said. We hit the ball well and we mixed up the offense well.
Offensively, Sanders nailed three of the Skylights eight aces in the match.
The Skylights tallied 60 kills and were led by Poplawski who notched 17 in the match. Gabrielle Chambliss had 27 assists.
National American University, who boasts the No. 1 middle hitter from the Brazilian National team, downed the Skylights Friday 15-9, 15-11, 15-8.
National American, who started five girls from Brazil, served 98 percent and missed only one serve in the entire match.
We led at one point in all three games, Handley said. We took them out of their offense and we frustrated them because we got excited about every point.
The Skylights had 40 digs with Hostetter collecting 12 in the match.
Poplawski and Hostetter each notched eight kills to lead the Skylight attack. Hammonds had two solo blocks in the effort.
Saturday, the Skylights fell to the University of Mary, a team they had met twice before, 8-15, 17-15, 15-7, 15-13.
Northern notched 71 digs in the contest, led by Sanders who collected 18. Hostetter collected 17, while Gerenz and Baack also tallied double figures.
I felt that Jen Sanders defense this weekend really came around, Handley said. I am very happy with that.
Poplawski had 13 kills with a .333 attack percentage to lead the Skylights. Hostetter added 11 kills in the effort.
Connie Fritz moved back to the right side hitting position and played strong for the Skylights.
I felt she came in and played aggresively. She played hard and was always ready for the ball, Handley said.
The Skylights closed out the tournament Saturday with a 17-15, 15-10, 15-8 win over South Dakota Tech.
South Dakota Tech reminded us of Montana Tech her in our conference, Handley said. They were extremely scrappy and picked up everything.
Northern tallied 40 kills, led by Poplawski with 14. Fritz added six with a .385 hitting percentage.
The Skylights served 96 percent, including seven aces in the match.
Janelle Gillies came into the match and served three aces and notched nine digs in the contest.
Overall, it was a learning experience, Handley said. We got a lot of playing time and we needed that.