Prep Volleyball

Mount Vernon volleyball hangs with the bigger schools in Fall Classic

Mustangs sweep Xavier and Valley, drop a 3-setter to Pleasant Valley

MOUNT VERNON — Four elite teams. Six matches, which took 7 1/2 hours to complete.

An extremely long day ended as it began — with a Mount Vernon sweep.

The smallest school in terms of enrollment, Class 3A second-ranked Mount Vernon bookended its four-team Mount Vernon Fall Classic volleyball event with straight-set victories over 4A No. 2 Cedar Rapids Xavier and 5A No. 6 West Des Moines Valley on Saturday at Mount Vernon High School.

“We knew there were some highly ranked teams coming to town,” Mustangs libero Jorie Randall said. “We wanted to play as hard as we could. We were all moving and communicating together.”

The Mustangs (14-2), Valley (7-4) and Pleasant Valley (8-1) all completed 2-1 days. Xavier (15-4) dropped all three of its matches, two in three sets.

Saturday’s featured match, from a local perspective, was the opener, in which Mount Vernon defeated Xavier 25-18, 28-26.

Mount Vernon had suffered its first loss of the season Tuesday, to Dyersville Beckman.

“Today I think we were in more control of the game,” said University of Iowa commit Lauren Schrock, who went over the 1,000-kill mark for her career. “We stayed steady and composed, more mentally strong.”

The first set was deadlocked at 16-all before the Mustangs scored five points in a row — two on Schrock kills, one from Natalie Welch, one from Camryn Ellyson and an ace by Kameron Brand.

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A five-point run by Xavier had the Saints in position to force a third set, leading the second, 24-22. But kills by Schrock and Sara Rhomberg foiled two set points, then the Mustangs capitalized on some attack errors by the Saints late.

“We were able to finish today,” Randall said. “The other night, we were a little shaky.”

The Mustangs were in control early against Pleasant Valley, winning the first set and leading the second, 9-5, but the Spartans outplayed the hosts the rest of the way for a 21-25, 25-20, 15-6 triumph.

Mount Vernon closed the day with a 25-19, 25-23 victory over Valley to force the three-way tie in the round robin.

MOUNT VERNON FALL CLASSIC

Saturday, at Mount Vernon

Teams — 1. (tie) Mount Vernon, Pleasant Valley and West Des Moines Valley 2-1, 4. C.R. Xavier 0-3.

Mount Vernon def. C.R. Xavier, 25-18, 28-26

Mount Vernon def. West Des Moines Valley, 25-19, 25-23

Pleasant Valley def. Mount Vernon, 21-25, 25-20, 15-6

Pleasant Valley def. C.R. Xavier, 25-19, 22-25, 17-15

West Des Moines Valley def. Pleasant Valley, 21-25, 25-23, 15-11

West Des Moines Valley def. C.R. Xavier, 23-25, 25-23, 15-11

Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com

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