Boys spikers win conference tourney

MTT News's picture
By: 
Rob Reischel
Kevin McMahon and Middleton's boys volleyball team won the Big Eight Conference tournament last Saturday./Times-Tribune photo by Mary Langenfeld

Middleton’s boys volleyball team enjoyed a terrific week.

The Cardinals rolled to the title at the Big Eight Conference tournament. Middleton also received the No. 1 seed in its sectional when the postseason begins Nov. 3.

“It was a fun day for us as we pushed each other,” Middleton coach Ben White said of the conference tournament. “People got to play some positions they normally don’t play and the lineups were pretty even.”

Middleton went 3-0 in pool play, then rolled past Madison La Follette, 25-19, 25-20, in the semifinals.

In the title match, Middleton upended Madison Memorial, 25-15, 25-20.

“This was the first conference tournament in over 20 years that we have held,” White said. “It was a good opportunity to give a lot of people playing time and opportunities to get on the court. I thought we did a nice job all day as a team. 

“I was really impressed with the play of Madison Memorial in the championship match. They went 0-3 in our pool, but then went on the other side of the bracket and took down No. 2 seed Beloit and No. 3 seed Madison West to make the championship match. And they pushed us and forced us to earn the match. It was good to see us respond, but we know we’ll have to play better in the postseason.”

Kevin McMahon led Middleton with 33 kills on the day and 18 digs. Cole Spitler had 22 kills, while Pace Balster added 18 kills.

Andrew Lepage had 64 assists, while Mathew Caamal added 40 assists. Thomas Robson had 28 digs, Kyle Bradley-Bartleson had 18 digs, Nick Zeinemann added four blocks and Jacob Ross had five aces.

“Blake Sprecher was gone for the morning session so Cole Spitler got to see a lot of court time and he definitely took advantage having his best day of the year,” White said. “The rest of the guys split up into two teams and everyone got to play one game of each match until the championship match. 

“I was especially pleased with the play of junior Nick Zeinemann. Nick has come a long way since the beginning of the year and he led us with four block kills on the day. I don’t think anyone has a bigger cheering section on this team than Nick as everybody loves to support him as he continues to get better and better.”

Middleton also received the No. 1 seed in its sectional and received a first round bye. The Cardinals meet either fourth-seeded Beloit Memorial or fifth-seeded Fort Atkinson in the sectional semifinals next Tuesday at 7 p.m.

“Both teams are capable of beating us if they play well,” White said. “Each has two very solid hitters/all-around players. 

“We’ve played Fort two times so that helps, but have only seen Beloit once. I know they have a tough jump server and that could cause us problems.”

The sectional final is Nov. 5 at 7 p.m. at Madison Memorial. Second-seeded Waukesha South or third-seeded Mukwonago would be the most likely opponent.

“The key for us is to control what we can control,” White said. “Keep the ball in play, serves in play and take advantage of the opportunities that present themselves. And finally we have to keep confident. If we do that, we’ll see what the next two weeks brings.”

• On deck: Middleton finished the regular season Tuesday night with a match at No. 7 Brookfield East. The Spartans are coached by former MHS standout Tim Owen and have one of the top programs in the state.

“Really looking forward to seeing what we can do,” White said.

 

Rate this article: 
No votes yet