Mendon finds a way
BATTLE CREEK — When asked how her team ended up on the winning side of a five-set Division 4 semifinal win over No. 4-ranked Southfield Christian, Mendon volleyball coach Heather Bowers summed it up in one word.
Bowers, the second-year head coach of the top-ranked Lady Hornets, spoke proudly of her team’s effort on the court at Battle Creek’s Kellogg Arena, where Mendon outlasted No. 4-ranked Southfield Christian 27-25, 17-25, 19-25, 25-22, 15-13.
Mendon, now 39-9-6, moves onto face No. 5-ranked Leland in Saturday’s state championship match at 10 a.m. back at Kellogg Arena.
It will be a rematch of last year’s state championship match won by Mendon in a sweep over perennial state power Leland and the Comets’ legendary coach Laurie Glass.
Mendon’s battle against Southfield Christian, also a rematch of last year’s semifinal won in a three-game sweep by the Lady Hornets, was anything but easy this time.
Mendon, normally a strong serving team, didn’t play its best overall game but managed to survive another day with their will to win.
“We had our struggles today for sure, especially with our serves. But we fought through it with our resilience. The girls just kept working hard and weren’t willing to give up,” Bowers said.
Mendon, which graduated five key seniors off last year’s state title squad, including all-staters in setter Aubrey Crotser and hitter Hayley Kramer, missed a total of 15 serves on the afternoon. The Lady Hornets only average six missed serves per match.