The Rhinelander High School volleyball team was unable to keep up with Northland Pines on Tuesday night and dropped a three-set Great Northern Conference match on senior. Jacqueline Smith, the 2018 GNC player of the year led the Eagles to a 25-8, 25-12, 25-15 victory at the Jim Miazga Community Gymnasium.
To start the match Coach Brianna Scheuermann and the team honored Rhinelander's four seniors; Cynthia Beavers, Julie Breivogel, Novalee Juel, and Aryssa Zasada. Tuesday marked the four seniors last home match of the season, and all four started the contest for Rhinelander. Since Beavers returned to the lineup, she has proven to be one of the Hodags' top attackers.
Northland Pines built an early 9-3 lead in the first set which were aided by a few RHS receiving and attacking errors. Finally the Hodags settled in and Breivogel had a pair of early kills. Rhinelander pulled within five points at 7-12, but that would be a close as they would come. The Eagles rallied off 11 straight points to close the first set with a 25-8 win.
Despite the lopsided outcome in the first set, the Hodags battled and stayed within striking distance for over half of the second set before Smith sparked the Eagles who closed the second on a 14-3 run to win 25-12. Sophomore Ariel Pauer and Beavers each had early kills and Pauer an early block to bring the Hodags within two at 9-11. But a back-row kill from Smith started Pines streak. Smith recorded eight of her 17 kills in the second set alone.
In the third and final set of the night, the Eagles got an early jump and momentum to push ahead 13-4. Rhinelander pulled back to 8-16 but did not have enough to keep up with Pines down the stretch. Pauer and Beavers had late kills in the third, but the damage was done and the Eagles went on to win 25-15.
Pauer led the way or Rhinelander's attack and finished with five kills and Beavers added four kills and nine digs. Pauer also chipped in four blocks as well. Junior setter Olivia TerBeest recorded eight assists on the night and junior libero Hannah Worachek had a team high of 18 digs.
The Hodags had a better night serving and only had two service errors on 34 attempts. The biggest struggle for Rhinelander proved to be on their serve receive where they had 11 errors.
RHS fell to 0-7 in the GNC standings and are 1-22 overall this season. The Hodags will be back in action on Tuesday for a GNC match at Lakeland at 7:00PM.