Joliet Catholic outlasts MinookaThe Joliet Catholic Academy girls volleyball team celebrates their win over Minooka in Joliet Wednesday, August 31, 2011. | Brett Roseman~Sun-Times Media
Updated: August 31, 2011 9:52PM
In a spirited, three-game match between two programs that combined for 60 victories last season, Joliet Catholic and Minooka put on an early-season display Wednesday night of postseason-type volleyball excitement.
Joliet Catholic overcame a 27-25 Game 1 loss on its home court and kept its seven-year winning streak against Minooka intact with 25-17 and 25-19 victories in Games 2 and 3 in front of an overflow crowd.
“I think it’s great that it’s a town that’s close to us,’’ Joliet Catholic coach Christine Scheibe said. “The crowd, we had standing-room-only tonight. The girls were able late in the match to feed off the atmosphere of the crowd.’’
“Maybe next year,’’ a large group of T-shirt-clad Angels fans shouted from the bleachers as the third game ended.
Earlier it appeared this could be the year for Minooka after the Indians followed their Game 1 victory with a 4-0 burst to open Game 2.
“We were really upset, but we knew we could come back the second game and get the job done,’’ Joliet Catholic middle hitter Gianna Lincoln said.
“We came out really dead,’’ said Scheibe, citing poor passing for the offense not being effective enough. “We got a little bit of a lead in Game 1, but then we left our foot off the pedal and gave them all the momentum at the end of Game 1 going into Game 2.’’
Minooka went ahead 8-2 in the second game, but Joliet Catholic eventually closed the gap to 13-10 to stay within striking distance.
“In Game 2 we got on a service run,’’ Scheibe said. “That’s when Gianna started getting hot with her hitting and Mallory (Mangun) had a couple of nice kind of broken plays that she put away and got kills for us on.’’
Down 17-12, Joliet Catholic finished Game 2 with a 13-0 run that included late kills by Lincoln and Mangun before a Minooka error.
“We tried to push as much as we could,’’ Lincoln said. “I was trying to get the team up as much as I could.’’
“We were down so much — we just said it wasn’t over with all these fans around us,’’ Mangun said.
Joliet Catholic (3-0) had strong performances from Morgan Reardon (11 kills, 5 digs, 2 blocks), Kelly Feigh (9 kills), Lincoln (4 kills), Mangun (9 assists) and Emily Schoenstedt (7 assists).
Minooka (0-2) was led by Stacey Perinar with 15 kills, 25 digs, two blocks and 1 ace. Other key contributions came from Briana Marquez (27 assists, 5 blocks, 1 kill), Haley Bowden (22 digs), Kasey Schumacher (6 kills, 11 digs) and Tessa Griparis (3 aces, 1 kill, 3 blocks).
“That was a dogfight,’’ Minooka coach Chris Hoelscher said. “It’s always fun to play them because they all know each other. But when it comes down to it, we want to win. Our kids came out and they played hard.’’