Girls Volleyball: Many All-Staters Return

Watertown won its first Division 1 girls volleyball title last year, Kettle Moraine Lutheran won D-2, Cuba City in D-3 and Catholic Central won its second straight in D-4. Who will be crowned champions this year?

It was Watertown's third consecutive and 10th overall trip to the girls state volleyball tournament, but the Goslings had qualified for the Division 1 title match only twice, coming up short in 1998 and 2005.

However, Watertown finally reached the final destination, defeating six-time titlist West Bend East to claim its first championship in competitions at the Resch Center in Green Bay.

The Goslings, who finished 18-2, disposed of 2000 runner-up Menomonee Falls in four sets in the first round and then eliminated five-time trophy winner Westosha Central in five grueling sets, overcoming a 2-1 deficit with 25-22 and 15-8 decisions.

Watertown then made school history with a three-set sweep of the Suns, 25-20, 25-20 and 25-21 behind a combined 33 kills from first-team Wisconsin Volleyball Coaches Association all-stater Debbie Stadick (20) and second-teamer Lindsay Schwartz (13), 43 set assists from Kaley Jacobson and 20 digs from Erica Hozeska.

However, that wasn't the only hot action going on, as Kettle Moraine Lutheran earned its fourth title with the D-2 crown, Cuba City claimed its third top prize in D-3 and Burlington Catholic Central grabbed its second straight D-4 championship.

Kettle Moraine Lutheran vs. Waupun

In D-2, the Chargers downed Oconto Falls in four sets and then finished 16-0 with a 15-12 verdict in the fifth set after leading 2-0 to upend 10-time champion Waupun. Lutheran, which won its other three titles in D-3 from 2002-04, registered 12 service aces, received 39 assists from honorable mention all-stater Tori Kroll and 14 kills from second-teamer Andrea Henning and 12 from Caitlyn Rusch.

Cuba City swept the final three games after losing the opening set against Eau Claire Regis in the D-3 semifinals and then finished 15-1 after holding off Oostburg in five sets, winning the first two and the clincher, 15-10.

Third-team all-stater Briana Kaiser recorded 36 kills to lead the Cubans' attack, while Kelsey Pustina, an honorable mention selection, delivered 53 assists and Emily Kaiser finished with 23 digs.

In D-4, the Hilltoppers (15-0) didn't drop a set in defeating Green Bay NEW Lutheran and Hillsboro, a runner-up for the second time in three years, to claim the championship.

First-teamer Carol Henney led Catholic Central with 13 kills and Keena Schneider registered 30 assists.

So, what does the 2008 season hold in store? Well, don't be surprised if fans are talking about many of the same teams again in late October and early November because a lot of girls who earned all-state recognition have returned.

Catholic Central's Henney, Waupun's Michielah Navis and Muskego's Tricia Foldy are seniors after making the first team. Second-teamers include seven seniors: the KM Lutheran tandem of Groth and Henning, Danielle Carlson of Marshfield, Elizabeth Egerer of Sheboygan County Christian, Caroline Langer of Milwaukee Pius XI, Carmen Leitermann of D.C. Everest and Karen Sueppel of Cedarburg. Junior Bridget Nickel of Waupun also earned that distinction.

Meanwhile, Waupun junior Brandi Dolgner, Muskego senior Rachel Glisch, Watertown junior Erienne Lauersdorf and Catholic Central senior Samantha Oldenburg made the third team.

Twenty-two others were scheduled back after making the honorable mention list.

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