Let's play volleyball (WEB)

The 2019 Wright County Conference East title is nearly within the Hutchinson volleyball team’s grasp after a 3-1 victory in Waconia Tuesday night.

With that win the Tigers (14-7, 4-0 WCC East) have earned at least a share of the conference championship, but sharing titles isn’t much fun. If they can defeat Orono in the final conference match, the Tigers would lock up the championship outright for their first conference title since 2015.

Although Hutch lost to Waconia 2-0 a month ago at the Southwest Minnesota Challenge in Marshall, Hutchinson has played like a different team the past three weeks and was on a five-match winning streak following Tuesday. That’s the team’s longest winning streak since the start of the 2018 season.

The Tigers rolled through the Wildcats 25-9 in the first set and 25-20 in the second. Waconia got one back 25-21 in the third set, but Hutch finished it off in a 28-26 nail-bitter in the fourth game.

Hutchinson relied on its big hitters to control the game as Grace Daak racked up 22 kills, Adria Rhoda had 15 and Morgan Ellis had seven to lead the team. Michaela Stamer set them up with 45 assists. Rhoda also chipped in four blocking aces to lead the team.

The Tigers played Watertown-Mayer Thursday and were at the St. Michael-Albertville Invitational Friday and Saturday. They wrap up their regular season with a home match at 7 p.m. Monday against Orono, with the conference title on the line.

Hutchinson 3, Waconia 1 (Oct. 8)

Hutch … 25 25 21 28

Wac ….. 9 20 25 26

Hutch stats

Kills — Emma Olberg 4, Grace Daak 22, Aubrey Brunkhorst 3, Adri Rhoda 15, Morgan Ellis 7, Emily Messner 1

Assists — Olberg 1, Brunkhorst 2, Michaela Stamer 45, Messner 3, Alyssa Stamer 1

Digs — Olberg 11, Brunkhorst 1, Rhoda 3, Ellis 1, Michaela Stamer 11, Messner 15, Rachel Scheele 5, Alyssa Stamer 11

Blocking aces — Olberg 1, Daak 1, Rhoda 4

Serving aces — Olberg 5, Ellis 1, Michaela Stamer 1

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