Tracy-Milroy-Balaton at Minneota
7:15 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 14
Minneota began the fall outside the Class 1A top 10, but has quickly moved into the rankings thanks to a hot start. A couple of losses last week don’t change the Vikings’ outlook, as both were to ranked teams in bigger classes (to No. 3-3A Champlin Park and to No. 5-2A Marshall) at the Southwest Minnesota Challenge in Marshall. The No. 8-1A Vikings (6-2) are anchored by junior hitters Lydia Sussner and Lizzy Gillingham, who combined for 567 kills last fall.
Tracy-Milroy-Balaton also dropped its first two matches of the season last week, one to Prior Lake and one to Northfield, also at the Southwest Minnesota Challenge in Marshall. The No. 4-1A Panthers (6-2) finished 3-2 in the tough tournament field but actually climbed one spot in the coaches’ rankings, leapfrogging Bethlehem Academy. As expected, the Panthers have received big offensive contributions from all-state outside hitter Sydney Lanoue and middle hitter Evelyn Dolan, as well as strong ball control from libero Kaylee Kirk.