116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
MARION — Megan Renner is a rare talent. She sets, and she swings.
'Nobody else has anybody like her,' teammate Isabel Schminke said of the Purdue University recruit. 'I love it when I get the first ball to her and she puts a great swing on it.'
Renner piloted fifth-ranked Linn-Mar to a business-like sweep of Cedar Rapids Prairie (25-17, 25-22, 25-12) in a Class 5A volleyball regional semifinal Tuesday night at Linn-Mar High School.
'Our mindset coming in was all business and focus,' Renner said. 'I think we handled our jobs very well.'
The Lions (29-10) will host Monday's regional final against No. 13 Waukee (26-20), a straight-set winner over Ottumwa. The victor advances to the state tournament Nov. 7-10 at the U.S. Cellular Center.
If the Lions advance, it will be their second consecutive trip downtown.
A 6-foot-2 junior, Renner collected 33 assists to run a balanced attack. And when the opportunity presented itself, she took a whack at the ball and notched four kills herself.
Anna Gorsich led the Lions with 11 kills, UNI recruit Carly Spies added nine and Ellie Von Lehmden registered eight.
Other than a brief blip early in the second set — a six-point run by the Hawks (20-16) — Linn-Mar controlled the action throughout.
'We knew we had beaten them before, but we wanted to stay focused and play at a high level,' Schminke said. 'We ran after the ball and were able to put it down.'
Linn-Mar Coach Teresa Bair said, 'The kids came out and executed a lot of the thigs we talked about. They didn't get rattled.'
Down 6-2 in the second set, Linn-Mar quickly reclaimed control with an 11-2 run for a 13-8 advantage. Prairie got within 23-21 and 24-22, but Gorsich's kill closed the set.
It was 7-7 in the third before Linn-Mar pulled away.
Kylee Oldenburger and Kyra Ikeda paced Prairie with nine kills apiece. Freshman Haley Ikeda posted 17 assists.
LINN-MAR 3, CEDAR RAPIDS PRAIRIE 0 (25-17, 25-22, 25-12)
Serving — Prairie 49-52 (.942), Linn-Mar 71-73 (.973)
Aces — Prairie 3 (Haley Ikeda 2), Linn-Mar 5 (Ellie Von Lehmden 2)
Kills — Prairie 34 (Kylee Oldenburger, Kyra Ikeda 9), Linn-Mar 41 (Anna Gorsich 11)
Assists — Prairie 31 (H. Ikeda), Linn-Mar 39 (Megan Renner 33)
Blocks — Prairie 2 (Oldenberger, Halle Person), Linn-Mar 6 (Von Lehmden 3)
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