THREE OAKS — The 2022 high school volleyball season began on Saturday, Aug. 20, with River Valley hosting a round-robin tournament that concluded with Michigan Lutheran (9-1), New Buffalo (7-3) and the host Mustangs (6-4) compiling winning records.

River Valley took two from Lawrence (25-5, 25-10) and Fennville (25-17, 25-23), split with Michigan Lutheran (25-22, 21-25) and the Bison (25-14, 21-25) before dropping a fair versus Decatur (10-25, 19-25).

Statistical leaders for River Valley included: Ashley Strefling with 65 assists and 17 ace serves; Hanah Lynch with 14 kills; Lexi McCarty with 18 kills; and Macey Springer with 12 kills.

River Valley coach Heidi Michaels said the team had runs of good stuff and runs of inconsistent stuff during the tourney, which is pretty normal for this early in the season.

“We have a lot to work on, which we can see.”

The Bison started out with 22-25, 11-25 setbacks against Michigan Lutheran before sweeping past Decatur (25-21, 25-16) and Lawrence (25-13, 25-12) and a split versus River Valley (14-25, 25-21) before the day ended with a 25-8, 25-13 sweep of Fennville.

“We’re trying some different players at different positions and moving it around,” said New Buffalo coach Bruce Molineaux, “We’re pretty happy with today.”

Statistical leaders for the Bison included: Jane Funk (31 kills, 3 blocks and 20 digs); Ava Johnson (35 assists); Amanda Jones (23 kills and 35 digs); Liz Schmock (29 digs); Benita Puskinigus (8 kills, 3 blocks and 5 digs); Bella Notorangelo (7 digs); Ellei Cybulski (3 kills); Josey Humphrey (3 digs); Amelia Selir (2 kills); and Cassidy Saunders (2 kills).

BRIDGMAN

The Bridgman varsity team traveled north on Aug. 20, and emerged from the Lawton Invitational as champions.

The Bees bested Hopkins 21-19, 21-9 in the finals following a 21-14, 21-11 semifinal sweep of Our Lady of the Lake.

Bridgman lost just one game during pool play (an 18-21, 21-20 split with Lawton). The Bees also triumphed versus Colon (21-17, 21-5); Hartford (21-7, 21-16); and Comstock (21-9, 21-9).

Bridgman coach Jim Ragosta said the Bees were led by a career-high day offensively and defensively from Takiya Cornelius.

Statistical leaders for Bridgman included: Cornelius – 55 kills, 30 digs; Bella Gearhart – 69 assists, 31 digs, 6 ace serves; Tatyanna Hill – 13 kills, 5 blocks; Peyton Oman – 35 digs, 10 assists; Kylie Ott – 29 digs; Lily Barker – 9 kills, 6 blocks; Ava Starbuck – 4 blocks, 10 dogs, 6 aces; Melanie Warren – 16 digs; Kaylee School – 6 kills; Morgan Bryant – 3 digs.

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