No. 10 Lynx win 4 of 6, place 3rd at Algona Invite

ALGONA – The 10th-ranked (Class 4A) Webster City volleyball team won four of six matches, including a tournament-opening three set victory over eighth-ranked (3A) and North Central Conference rival Algona, on Saturday during the Algona Invitational.

The Lynx (6-2) placed third overall.

WCHS dumped Algona (15-21, 21-17, 16-14), Belmond-Klemme (21-14, 21-11) and North Union (21-13, 13-21, 15-13) in pool play. Its only loss in the preliminary round came at the hands of No. 11-ranked (2A) Lake Mills (21-18, 21-18).

But Algona learned from its early mistakes and got the better of the Lynx (21-13, 21-15) in the semifinal round. WCHS settled for bronze after disposing of North Union again (21-5, 21-14), this time in quick fashion.

“The girls played well,” WCHS head coach Jess Howard said. “We had some (sets) against Algona and Lake Mills where we had some lapses where our serve receive just wasn’t what it needed to be to be aggressive right away, and that’s why they ended the way they did. This tournament helps us quite a bit just to see what we’re doing well and what we need to continue to work on.

“We’ll work on serve receive and getting the ball to the setter; that will make our offense run that much smoother.”

Senior all-state outside hitter Kaylee Schnathorst was the main offensive weapon, as she blasted 43 kills in the tournament. Hannah Myers lashed 21, Morgan Gourley delivered 18 and Molly Gilbert punched in with 15 with only five attack errors all day.

Ashley Price registered 56 assists, while Gianna Gourley distributed 42.

Howard said defensive awareness was key in the opening win over Algona, particularly from Gourley and Gilbert. They piled up 40 and 26 digs, respectively, in the tournament.

“I thought Morgan had one of the best defensive days of her career,” Howard said. “She and Molly did a really good job in that first (match) with Algona and took one of their middle hitters out of the match.”

Schnathorst chipped in 26 digs as well on the day.

Price led the Lynx at the service line with eight aces.

WCHS will begin conference play on Thursday with a trip to Fort Dodge to take on St. Edmond.