Lady Trojans top Ponca in Top 10 battle

HARTINGTON — For the second time this season, Cedar Catholic volleyball sweeps Ponca in three straight sets. The Lady Trojans move on to 22-0, showing that they are the team to beat.
“The sweep means a lot because Ponca is a good team,” said Cedar head coach Denae Buss. “We knew they were going to be out to get us, and it gives us a little confidence because we may be seeing them again at sub-districts.”

Libero Madie Arens goes to the ground for a dig in Cedar’s match against Ponca

Cedar took control of the match right away. Ashley Hamilton served first for the Lady Trojans, and she won eight straight points before giving up the serve to Ponca. Cedar then didn’t give up the lead for the rest of the set, winning it 25-15.
“It was great because we have been missing our serves a lot,” said Buss. “She got us some aces and the girls were so ecstatic when they came into the locker room after the first set because they didn’t miss a serve and we have been running.”
Cedar came out in the second set with that same intensity. Ponca won the first point and battled briefly in the beginning, but the Lady Trojans soon took the lead and the momentum.
Cedar won that set 25-11 off of some strong front net play. Again Maddie Wieseler, Jada Cattau, and Anna Reifenrath made a huge impact at the net. Wieseler led the team in kills, blocks, and tied with Ashley Hamilton to lead the team in set assists. The junior also had 10 digs on the night.
During the third set, Cedar lost their fire and almost allowed Ponca to extend the match to a fourth set. After taking a 9-1 lead to start the set, Ponca fought back and was down just 15-11. Cedar made another push and extended that lead to 20-12, but again Ponca fought back.
Cedar got up in the set 23-16, then Ponca scored four straight points to make it 23-20. Cedar held on to win 25-21, but it was a nail biter of a set as Ponca almost came back on numerous occasions.
“Just our own hitting errors allowed that to happen, and that’s exactly how they came back on us the last time,” said Buss. “They are not going to let up on you. I also felt the intensity went out but we gained it there at the end. We can’t be perfect all of the time so working through the adversity and mentally pushing through was good.”
Cedar may not be able to be perfect all of the time, but so far the Lady Trojans still have a perfect record. Sitting at 22-0, Big Red sits as the best team in Class C-2 rankings by the Omaha World-Herald, Lincoln Journal Star, and by
Cedar Catholic hosted St. Mary’s on Tuesday. This week, the Lady Trojans travel to Boone Central/Newman Grove on Thursday. Cedar then ends it’s regular season with a triangular in Wayne that will also feature a match against O’Neill.
Ponca 15 11 21
Cedar Catholic 25 25 25

KILLS Cedar – Maddie Wieseler, 12; Anna Reifenrath, 11; Jada Cattau, 11; Mallorie Steffen, 4; Brianna Miller, 4; Abby Hochstein, 3; Ashley Hamilton, 1.
SET ASSISTS Cedar – Maddie Wieseler, 18; Ashley Hamilton, 18; Abby Hochstein, 3; Brianna Miller, 2.
BLOCKS Cedar – Maddie Wieseler, 5; Brianna Miller, 2; Mallorie Steffen, 1.
ACE SERVES Cedar – Ashley Hamilton, 3; Maddie Sudbeck, 1; Jada Cattau, 1.
DIGS Cedar – Madie Arens, 17; Ashley Hamilton, 13; Maddie Wieseler, 10; Jada Cattau, 8; Sydney Stefen, 6; Anna Reifenrath, 5; Mallorie Steffen, 3; Maddie Sudbeck, 2; Brianna Miller, 1.