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Emery powers Willmar to 17th sweep of season

WILLMAR - With Nina Emery on the service line, Willmar seems to find a groove. The senior middle hitter served a lot Tuesday night and the Cardinals took advantage.

WILLMAR - With Nina Emery on the service line, Willmar seems to find a groove. The senior middle hitter served a lot Tuesday night and the Cardinals took advantage.

Emery uncorked nine ace serves in 29 errorless attempts and was on the service line when Willmar rattled off to long runs to help the Central Lakes Conference co-leading Cardinals sweep Brainerd 25-16, 25-13, 25-22.

Sophomore rightside hitter Greta King had a team-high 10 kills and senior middle hitter Mary Sussenguth piled up nine kills and five ace blocks to also ignite the Cardinals (10-1, 19-2) win their 10th straight match and post their eighth sweep in the CLC - 17th overall.

Willmar had taken a 10-9 lead midway through the second game on a kill from King when Emery went back to serve.

She stayed on the service line as the Cardinals went on a 10-0 run, including four ace serves by Emery.

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"I just try to put first serve in play and then on the second serve I try to put some spin on it," said Emery. "It's exciting when we get on a roll because we play a lot better."

Brainerd (2-8, 4-19) grabbed an early lead in the third game before Emery served Willmar back into the match. Emery tied the game at 5-5 with her sixth ace of the match to fuel another long Willmar run. With the aide of King's four kills and four Brainerd hitting errors, the Cardinals went on a 13-0 run to take a 17-5 lead.

The Cardinals host St. Cloud Apollo Thursday.

Willmar 3, Brainerd 0

Brainerd (2-8, 4-19) 16 13 22

Willmar (10-1, 19-2) 25 25 25

Brainerd

Serving (aces): Kylie Abrahamson 2, Jennifer Niklaus 2, Paige Olson 1, Kelsey Rassatt 1 .... Setting (assists): Niklaus 20, Rassatt 7 .... Hitting (kills): Olson 11, Abrahamson 5, Karlye Barron 4, Hannah Fossum 4, Rassatt 2, Niklaus 1 .... Blocking (aces): none ... Digs: Fossum 17, Rassatt 14, Olson 12, Niki Gorvin 10, Niklaus 7, Abrahamson 5, Kelsey McDowell 5, Barron 4

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Willmar

Serving: Kelsey Hanson 12-13-2, Chelsea Vreeman 8-8-0, Greta King 3-4-0, Laura Nielsen 6-7-0, Mary Sussenguth 11-11-0, Nina Emery 29-29-9, Heather Thoma 2-2-0 .... Setting: Hanson 58-58-28, King 5-5-1, Megan Brown 2-2-1, Laurie Buer 1-1-1, Thoma 1-1-0 .... Hitting: King 25-31-10, Sussenguth 16-19-9, Nielsen 18-19-7, Jamie Wilson 10-11-3, Emery 8-9-3, Hanson 3-5-1, Jenna Olson 1-1-0, Vreeman 1-1-0 .... Blocking (aces): Sussenguth 5, King 1, Nielsen 1 ... Digs: King 8, Brown 7, Hanson 7, Olson 7, Emery 6, Vreeman 3, Wilson 3, Randiann Sather 2, Sussenguth 2, Nielsen 1

NEXT - Willmar: Thursday, home vs. St. Cloud Apollo

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