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Willmar volleyball comes up short

FERGUS FALLS -- Willmar volleyball has never won a section final and Moorhead made sure to keep it that way as they ended the Cardinals' season with a 3-0 sweep in the Section 8AAA final in Fergus Falls on Saturday.

FERGUS FALLS - Willmar volleyball has never won a section final and Moorhead made sure to keep it that way as they ended the Cardinals' season with a 3-0 sweep in the Section 8AAA final in Fergus Falls on Saturday.

Moorhead was aggressive right out of the gates, attacking the Cardinals with heavy serves and strong defense.

"Our girls are used to when they hit the ball it being a kill but that didn't happen tonight," said Willmar head coach Traci Grussing. "They play really good defense and we just couldn't find spots early on."

A big reason for that was Moorhead's Maddie Dierling, who finished the night with seven blocks. Spud star Brooke Tonsfeldt came up big as well, recording 19 digs and 13 kills.

The Spuds took the first set 25-15 and followed that up with a similar second set that finished 25-17.

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"We've never really been in this position," Grussing said. "We had a lot of practices (before this match) so we were well-prepared but I think we were a little freaked out in the beginning."

The Cardinals seemed to figure things out in the third set, though, opening with an 8-3 run.

"I just told them, 'This is it. Go out there and talk, communicate and have fun,'" Grussing said. "The more they interact with each other the easier it becomes. It takes away the pressure for sure."

The Spuds bounced back, though, and the two teams began trading points midway through the set before Moorhead slammed the door shut, winning 25-21.

Grussing said it's a tough loss for her team but it's hard not to be excited for next season.

"They know what it takes to get here now," Grussing said. "We'll miss our seniors but our program is the biggest since I've been here and we've got the building blocks for the next level. This is just the start."

Moorhead 3, Willmar 0

Willmar (23-7)............................ 15 17 21

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Moorhead (24-6).............................. 25 25 25

Related Topics: VOLLEYBALLMOORHEAD
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