Prior Lake vs Champlin Park
7 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 31
Prior Lake enters the week coming off a victory over East Ridge and a 3-1 loss to host Hopkins in the Breakdown Sports Side Out Classic on Saturday.
The No. 2-3A Lakers (1-1) have been without libero (and University of Minnesota commit) CC McGraw due to injury, which has robbed them of the best defensive player in the state. Her loss has been felt thus far, as it has forced Dean to juggle his regular lineup.
Sophomore Dezirae Spratt led the Lakers with 10 digs in the loss to Hopkins, while seniors Hannah Reis and Haley Stolt added nine digs each. Reis paces the team with 33 digs after two matches and looks to be the main replacement for McGraw at this point.
Michigan commit Kayla Bair has continued her powerful attacks from the middle with a team-leading 34 kills. Stolt, a Bemidji State recruit, has 24 kills.
Champlin Park is also missing an outstanding Division I recruit, but it’s because of graduation, not injury. Last year’s Miss Volleyball, Sydney Hilley, is now at the University of Wisconsin, which most expected would leave a huge void for the No. 5-3A Rebels (1-0). But a terrific — and overlooked — junior class has the team off to a great start.
Champlin Park dropped its opening two sets to Stillwater in Saturday’s Breakdown Sports Side Out Classic, but stormed back to win the match, with the fifth set going extra points.
Juniors Emma Schmidt and Izzy Ashburn took turns filling the Hilley role for the Rebels, both setting and attacking from a 6-2 offense. Ashburn racked up 27 kills and 32 set assists in the victory, while Schmidt had 26 kills and 35 set assists.