Southeast Valley takes triangular vs. Gaels, Eagle Grove

Messenger photo by Britt Kudla Southeast Valley’s Delaney Conrad hits the ball over the net as St. Edmond’s Cambrie McBride defends on Monday in the Gael gym. For more photos, please visit CU.messengernews.net

The Southeast Valley volleyball team is in a groove, and head coach Kristi Castenson has seen this kind of hot streak before.

With a lineup dominated by seven seniors, the Jaguars (11-3 overall) picked up two more victories in a triangular on Monday night, knocking off Eagle Grove (25-11, 25-12) and host St. Edmond (25-14, 25-10).

In the first match of the evening, the Gaels (6-6) beat the Eagles (0-15), 25-15 and 25-16.

Castenson has coached this group of classmates since they were in grade school. She knows how competitive they get once the ball is rolling in their favor.

“I’ve been coaching these girls since they were young and they play very well together,” Castenson said. “They can read each other well, and you can see the chemistry at the net.”

The starting rotation for the Jaguars consists of five seniors, a junior and a sophomore, with two more seniors, two juniors and a sophomore on the roster as well.

When the Jaguars got into their rotation of senior libero Shelby Cummins at the service line and classmate Mady Jaeschke as an outside hitter, senior Morgan Castenson is in position to call the offense.

Against Eagle Grove, that rotation netted 10-0 and 11-0 runs. In the final match of the night against the Gaels, they put together strings of seven and 12 consecutive points.

“(When that rotation is in) we definitely execute very well,” Castenson said. “Morgan can call the plays. Shelby can deliver the ball and Mady can hit very well.”

Jaeschke had a solid evening overall, recording 20 kills and four blocks in the triangular. Castenson dished out 27 assists. Against the Gaels, junior Delaney Conrad had three kills, and senior Cassidy Lambert had two.

“In that last match (against the Gaels), we had seven back-row attacks,” Castenson said. “They did a wonderful job all the way around.”

Southeast Valley has won five straight. In their 11 matches won, the Jags have won 24 of 26 games played.

The Jaguars defeated the Gaels in three games during the St. Edmond Invitational, and also beat the Eagles earlier this season in two games.

The Gaels got off to a quick start, handling the Eagles for the second time this season.

In the contest against the Eagles, Josie Huss was 12-for-13 serving with eight aces. Huss also had four kills and five digs.

Devyn Scott had five kills and two aces. Chloe Lewison contributed four kills and Jaci Oberg tallied 14 assists.

“I think the first match (against Eagle Grove), set the tone for the rest of the night,” said SEHS head coach Dee Huss. “It was a slower-paced match and we got sucked into that rhythm. We didn’t play with enough energy (against the Jaguars).”

Against Southeast Valley, Scott had four kills, while Huss and McBride contributed three each.

“The things that we have been doing well, didn’t show up (in the second match),” Huss said. “I don’t know if it was the break in between matches or what happened.

“But we have to get over that and get ready for Clarion-Goldfield-Dows.”

The Gaels host the Cowgirls on Thursday.

Southeast Valley is back in action on Thursday at Emmetsburg, facing the E-Hawks and Manson Northwest Webster.