FHN Losing Streak Against FHHS Continues as They Lose in Three Sets


Credit to Wil Skaggs

Junior Hannah Zimmerman bumps the ball (Photo by Wil Skaggs)

By Joel Boenitz

It’s safe to say that the Francis Howell Vikings’ girls volleyball team has been nothing short of dominant against the Knights, having never lost against the Knights since the 2008 season. So when the Knights faced the Vikings at home on September 12, they knew they had to end the dry spell.

“Everybody was really positive [before the game],” senior Elise Stuertz said, “if we’re going to lose, it’s what people expect, so we might as well just come out with a lot of energy and do everything we can to make it a well-fought game.”

The Knights started off the match on fire, going on a 9-2 run before Howell decided to take a timeout. After the timeout, the Vikings were able to tie it up at 13. The teams were neck and neck, alternating points throughout the set. But thanks to a diving save by junior Kira Ward on the final point of the set, the Knights won the set 25-22, the first set won against the Vikings since 2013. For the first time in a long time, the Knights finally had the upper edge on the Vikings, and was only one set away from finally ending the streak.

“That’s the best I’ve seen them play in a while,” senior and manager Jordan Chapple said, “they were playing well as a team and having fun together.”

But after the teams switched sides for the second set, the Vikings ended up kicking into gear, starting off the set with an 8-1 lead. The Knights couldn’t catch up to the raging Vikings, as they took the second set by a score of 25-14. Unfortunately for the Knights, the Vikings were able to keep their head of steam going into the final set, as they were once again able to plow over the Knights, winning the final set against the Knights by a score of 25-14, and also taking the match 2-1.

“I think Howell got mad from losing the first set,” Ward said, “they were able to push themselves further, and we weren’t ready to retaliate against them.”

Luckily for the Knights, they will get another chance to face off against the Vikings and end the drought on October 10th at Francis Howell. They hope to work on a lot of different physical and mental components of the game before their next match up.

“I think that we will try to stay with our game and stay at our speed so that we can control the game, we let them control the game partway through and that really brought us down,” Stuertz said. “We’ll probably have to focus on keeping our nerves down a little bit because in the second set, for a lot of players, we got really nervous, and mistakes started to happen, so we need to work on staying nice and calm throughout the game.”