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PREP VOLLEYBALL: Sacred Heart nets win against Green Wave

East Grand Forks Senior High may have had the height advantage, but East Grand Forks Sacred Heart certainly had the ups. Sacred Heart, led by Jessica Fontes' 24 kills, used its vertical skills at the net to edge the Green Wave 17-25, 25-21, 17-25...

Prep volleyball
G East Grand Forks Senior High's Kate Warmack (24) and Chelsey Frydenlund (3) combine for a block against Katie Sagaser of East Grand Forks Sacred Heart in the third game of Monday night's match. Herald photo by John Stennes.

East Grand Forks Senior High may have had the height advantage, but East Grand Forks Sacred Heart certainly had the ups.

Sacred Heart, led by Jessica Fontes' 24 kills, used its vertical skills at the net to edge the Green Wave 17-25, 25-21, 17-25, 30-28, 15-13 on Monday night in the Senior High gymnasium.

Senior High's Kate Warmack, the tallest player on the court at 6-foot-2, lined up against 5-8 Fontes.

"It was really intense . . . I kind of just wanted to get it over with," Fontes said.

Fontes teamed with Tia Klein -- who is only 5-6 -- to make some big plays at the net for the Eagles.

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"Tia Klein . . . she's only 5-6, but her vertical is killer," Sacred Heart coach Margie Blackmun said. "For a small girl to go up and block like that . . . we call her superman because every time she gets in that area, she just flies."

Tracy Roach had 15 kills for Sacred Heart, while Klein chipped in 10 and Sam McDonald added nine.

Fontes also had three service aces for the Eagles, who improved to 5-2.

"Fontes jumps out of the gym," Senior High coach Paula Hedlund said. "And it's harder to block kids that are smaller that can jump well, timing-wise."

Sacred Heart's win was believed to be the first over the Green Wave since the early 1990s.

Sacred Heart, however, had to come from behind in a close fourth game to stay in the match.

Neither team led by more than two points in Game 4. Warmack recorded a kill and Laura Nelson had one of her match-high nine aces to put the Green Wave up 28-27. Fontes then recorded three straight points -- two blocks and a kill -- that sent the match into the fifth game.

"They had confidence," Blackmun said. "Every time we came into the huddle, they weren't ever down. They fought for it and went after it as hard as they could."

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Senior High took a 5-0 lead in the first game and, after the Eagles came from behind to tie it, went on a 10-0 run to pull away and win Game 1.

The Green Wave had a five-point lead in Game 2, but the Eagles -- who got progressively better as the match went on -- started blocking more late in the game and forced some Senior High errors to tie the match at one game apiece.

"We're struggling to finish close games," Hedlund said. "We get leads, then bump it out of bounds or just tip it instead of hitting it. I thought we had too many unforced errors in the first two games."

Senior High looked poised to finish the match, using an early 10-1 run to win the third game, but Sacred Heart, behind Fontes, held on.

"They had to be aggressive at the net," Blackmun said. "I told them, if you don't go up for a block, you're sitting next to me (on the bench). So then we just had to start finding open spots, and we found them."

The fifth game was tied at 12 when Fontes came up with a block on Warmack to go up by one. Chelsey Frydenlund had a kill to tie it 13-13 and Fontes answered with a kill for match point. McDonald came up with the game-winning kill for Sacred Heart.

"We just picked ourselves up and got intense," Fontes said. "We knew it was going to be a hard match, but I knew we could do it."

Said Blackmun: "Jessica's a girl that never, ever quits. She shows so much heart and is such a team player. So when she goes up there I'm expecting a kill, and if not, she's going to make a smart play."

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Ashlyn Krejci had 27 assists to help the Eagles' offense.

Warmack led the Green Wave attack with 14 kills, followed by Frydenlund with 13. Emily Bergman added six aces to help Senior High, which dropped to 2-8.

Related Topics: PREP SPORTSSACRED HEART
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