Teams of the Week: Tri-County volleyball in spotlight

Teams of the Week: Tri-County volleyball in spotlight


The Titans (35-2) landed 29 kills, eight aces (four by Kyla Skinner) and four blocks (each by a different player) in a super-sectional sweep against Edinburg. For the first time since the co-op between Oakland and Kansas started nine years ago, the program is headed to the state semifinals. Amber Meyer had 25 assists and Autumn Meyer 11 digs.


The Rockets (10-1) moved into the state quarterfinals for the fourth straight year thanks to a 22-7 win against Pleasant Plains. The current senior class has been part of more wins (45) than any other at Unity. Four running backs carried the ball. Three had double-figure gains. Mitch Negangard and Anthony Vasquez each had eight solo tackles.

Coach David Behm’s Sabers hit the postseason trifecta, following up on the school’s first regional and sectional titles in the sport with a runaway win in the Class 1A state championship race. All-staters Nick Hess and Jacob Helfrich set the pace. Of the three boys’ 1A trophy teams, St. Thomas More ran the fewest seniors (two) in the top seven.


Two-time all-stater Jonathan Schaap registered the school’s best individual finish at state. He placed 10th in the Class 2A state meet, one second ahead of teammate Forrest Smoes, whose 11th-place performance also bettered the school’s previous state best (13th by Mark Johnson in 1974). M-S (11th) had two all-staters in a year for the first time.


During the course of a 21-3 season, 15 different Tigers scored goals, but the reason coach Randy Blackman’s team secured the state’s second-place team trophy in Class 2A was a rock-solid defense, with goalkeeper Brian Summers as the last line of a defense that shut out 13 opponents and yielded three goals in the first six tournament matches.