This could have been a long, momentum-killing idle stretch.
“We were pretty flat early last week,” Dyersville Beckman volleyball coach Todd Troutman said. “We needed something.”
Beckman hadn’t faced outside competition since winning the Wamac Conference tournament Oct. 11. But the Blazers were able to get into a four-team scrimmage (with Linn-Mar, Center Point-Urbana and Clear Creek Amana) last Thursday at Linn-Mar.
“It’s exactly what we needed,” Troutman said. “Otherwise last week would have been a long week of doing nothing. It was good to go against three quality teams, and our girls responded well.”
The second-ranked Blazers (40-3) begin their postseason trek Monday with a Class 2A regional quarterfinal against Maquoketa Valley (15-12). First serve is 7 p.m. at Dyersville.
Beckman is down a class after competing in 3A since the advent of the five-class system. It’s not necessarily a break, moving into an already-stacked class that features powerhouses like Dike-New Hartford, Western Christian and Grundy Center.
“Class 2A looks very, very loaded,” Troutman said. “You don’t want to look too far ahead, but there are some very high-quality teams that we might see down the road.”
Beckman started the season 35-0, dropped three straight, then rebounded to win the Wamac tournament. Four different Blazers are averaging at least 2 kills per set, led by Heather Boeckenstedt (3.03).
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The Blazers are the area’s best bet in 2A to reach the state tournament. There are numerous hopefuls in 1A, led by No. 4 Starmont (26-6), which begins pursuit of its third consecutive trip. Champions of the Tri-Rivers Conference West Division, the Stars host Cedar Valley Christian (8-18).
Also in 1A, No. 5 North Tama (25-7) hosts Baxter (12-13), No. 7 Montezuma (27-6) entertains North Mahaska (12-16) and No. 9 Edgewood-Colesburg (23-10) hosts Calamus-Wheatland (11-24).
North Tama made its state-tournament debut last year; Montezuma and Ed-Co are trying to do the same this season.
Monday's Class 2A regional quarterfinals
(All matches 7 p.m.)
Underwood (23-12) at Tri-Center (28-7)
Ogden (6-19) at Guthrie Center ACGC (20-9)
Woodward-Granger (20-10) at South Hamilton (25-7)
Belle Plaine (23-5) at Conrad BCLUW (24-11)
Saint Ansgar (12-11) at Lake Mills (30-8)
Aplington-Parkersburg (9-19) at Dike-New Hartford (32-12)
Denver (23-16) at Hudson (29-6)
South Winneshiek (12-18) at MFL MarMac (15-9)
Jesup (19-16) at Grundy Center (38-3)
East Buchanan (22-13) at Wapsie Valley (20-14)
Iowa City Regina (14-23) at Wilton (33-4)
West Branch (23-14) at North Cedar (21-17)
Maquoketa Valley (15-12) at Dyersville Beckman (40-3)
Bellevue (16-15) at Cascade (19-14)
Wapello (12-16) at Durant (24-8)
Mediapolis (23-16) at Van Buren (29-3)
Monday's Class 1A regional quarterfinals
(All matches 7 p.m.)
Baxter (12-13) at North Tama (25-7)
Collins-Maxwell (14-12) at Gladbrook-Reinbeck (25-9)
Ar-We-Va (15-10) vs. Coon Rapids-Bayard (17-17), at Audubon
Glidden-Ralston (12-9) at Anita CAM (25-9)
Turkey Valley (4-21) at Tripoli (20-15)
West Central (12-16) at Riceville (10-21)
Calamus-Wheatland (11-24) at Edgewood-Colesburg (23-10)
Bellevue Marquette (19-14) at Elkader Central (21-7)
Cedar Valley Christian (8-18) at Starmont (26-6)
Morning Star Academy (7-14) at Springville (15-20)
Don Bosco (20-15) at Dunkerton (11-17)
Iowa Valley (17-17) at HLV (17-10)
North Mahaska (12-16) at Montezuma (27-6)
Grand View Christian (18-14) at Lynnville-Sully (15-12)
Keota (6-17) at New London (26-9)
Iowa Mennonite (19-14) at Winfield-Mount Union (14-14)
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