Blue Jays downs DHS in five games

JAMESTOWN -- Jamestown High School's Niki Schmitz stepped to the service line with her team trailing 14-9 in the fifth and final set against Dickinson in Jamestown on Wednesday night.

JAMESTOWN -- Jamestown High School's Niki Schmitz stepped to the service line with her team trailing 14-9 in the fifth and final set against Dickinson in Jamestown on Wednesday night.

Up to that point, both the Blue Jays and the Midgets had combined for a six service errors in the frame, and a 7-0 run by Schmitz to win out the match seemed pretty much impossible.

But Schmitz wasn't yet ready to let the Jays throw in the towel.

A miscue on offense and a slap out of bounds by the Midgets' Madison Deibert brought Jamestown to 14-11, and a kill by Jamestown's Kara Nygaard, assisted by Katie Ramlo, followed by another hitting error by Deibert closed the gap to 14-13.

A quick tip over for a kill by the Jays' Shelby Eamon knotted the score at 14-all, and yet again the Midgets stung themselves with their fourth error in the Jamestown run when Jess Herauf sent a shot in the net to give Jamestown a 15-14 lead.


The final blow was dealt rather fittingly, when Schmitz herself capped off the miraculous service run with her second ace serve of the night.

In what was arguably the most exciting volleyball match yet to be played under the new Jamestown High School roof, the Blue Jays walked away with a five-game stunner over Dickinson 18-25, 25-23, 21-25, 25-20, 16-14.

"That's not the way you draw it up, that's for sure," JHS coach Scott Fritz said. "We haven't played a five-game match all year and you need that fifth game sometimes to see what kind of character your team has. We showed a lot of character tonight.

Jamestown's fifth-set run was certainly impressive, but during the mayhem it was difficult to tell at times if the Blue Jays were rising to the occasion or if the Midgets were simply imploding.

"I think it was 50-50," DHS coach Jay Schobinger said. "It was tied 8-8 and then we were able to get up on them 14-8. You can't miss match-point serve.

"We shot ourselves in the foot."

Tied 8-8 in the final set, the Midgets' Ashley Jahner blocked a shot by Jamestown's Niki Schmitz and Deibert slammed home a pair of kills -- all part of a 5-0 run with Jahner serving -- helping Dickinson to a 13-8 lead. Jahner then scored what seemed to be a back-breaking ace to bring the Midgets the match point.

Jahner, however, sent her next serve long.


"The flu bug has killed us. Our two outside hitters (Herauf and Deibert) have been out all week," Schobinger said. "We were gassed. But that's not an excuse."

Dickinson jumped out early with a 25-18 win in the first set of the evening. Herauf notched seven of her game-high 28 kills in the convincing win, but Jamestown bounced back behind six of Alex Hanson's 20 kills on the night to take set No. 2, 25-23.

The second set was highlighted by a 5-0 Jamestown that put that Jays up 19-13. Hanson had three kills and Kara Nygaard scored two of her five aces to complete the run.

Probably the most important stat of the night for Jamestown was digs. The Jays' libero, Louise Bohanny, made one outstanding play after another in the back row, on her way to a school record-tying 43 digs.

Jamestown made seven errors in the third set, but still managed to battle to an 11-11 tie before the Midgets took over the frame. Herauf notched four kills and Deibert slammed home three down the stretch as Dickinson rolled 25-21.

The match changed for Jamestown in the fourth set. The Blue Jays came out looking for Hanson and Schmitz in the middle and found success early. The Jays blew out to a commanding 15-7 lead behind four of Schmitz's 10 kills as Jamestown cruised 25-20. Schmitz also scored both of her two blocks in the set.

Coming into the match, Dickinson had yet to give up a single set to Jamestown this season. The Midgets beat the Jays earlier this fall in Dickinson 3-0, and later blanked the Jamestown 2-0 at the Fargo Tournament earlier this month.

"(Jamestown) played much better, but we just ran out of gas. We need to get healthy," Schobinger said. "We've got to find a couple people that when crunch time comes wants the ball. We've been in a lot of tough battles this year and we need to find a way to win these close ones."


"Most of the time passing is the difference between winning and losing. When we were struggling, and when they were struggling, the passing game was struggling," Fritz added. "There wasn't a lack of hustle or determination by either team."

Kara Froehlich ended the night serving up 49 assists for Dickinson, while Sam Weng led Jamestown with 24 assists.

The Jamestown Sun and The Dickinson Press are both owned by Forum Communications Co.

Dickinson 25 23 25 20 14

Jamestown 18 25 21 25 16

Dickinson -- Kills: Jess Herauf 28, Madison Deibert 15, Leslie Beaudoin 5. Assists: Kara Froehlich 49. Aces: Herauf 3, Deibert 3, Katie Hewson 2. Digs: Justine Braunagel 27, Herauf 27, Froelich 26. Blocks: Hewson 4, Herauf 3.

Jamestown -- Kills: Alex Hanson 20, Niki Schmitz 10, Shelby Eamon 9, Kara Nygaard 9, McCall Goehner 6, Katie Ramlo 1. Assists: Sam Weng 24, Ramlo 19. Aces: Nygaard 5, Schmitz 2, Ramlo 1, Weng 1. Digs: Louise Bohanny 43, Nygaard 19, Goehner 13, Ramlo 11, Katie Nenow 9, Schmitz 8, Weng 3, Hanson 3, Eamon 2. Blocks: Hanson 5, Schmitz 2, Eamon 1.

Records: Jamestown 15-10, 9-3 West Region; Dickinson 19-11, 5-5 West Region.

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