Grab your gray and gray gear and let’s head to Illinois State University where Marist and Benet Academy face off in the state semifinal game for the second year in a row. These two teams have meet twice this year, Benet taking the first match in three sets while the redhawks took the second match, in just two sets… now we get the tie breaker, with a chance to win the state championship on the line.
Benet coming out strong, leading by just one early in the first set. After the hawks first attempt is block, Rachel Muisenga sets up Kyla Kenney who slams one down the line. BA up 5-3.
Marist sticking right with the wings early though. Nikki Jones sets up Maddie Arundel, who also paints the line. Redhawks trailing 8-6.
Few points later, and Muisenga, Benet’s junior setter shows she can block too. Kamryn Chaney hits right in to Muisenga’s wall, getting the wings pumped up as they extend their lead 12-7.
The redwings are just on a train that cannot be stopped in the first set. Muisenga sets up Sophie Gregus for the quick kill, Benet leading 20-8.
And from there they get to set point and it seems almost effortless from Kyla Kenney, who slaps the ball over and it finds floor for the redwings to take the first set in dominant fashion 25-12.
Now in to the second set, game all tied up at 6s. That is until Sophie Gregus adds another kill to her state sheet, one of 8 for her on the night as the wings now lead 7-6.
But Marist starting to show their skills. Gregus goes for the attempt, but the hawks deny that and set up Kamryn Chaney, the wings look to reset and get something going but Mary Clare Brusek gets up at the net to deny that chance and the redhawks take the lead, 9-8.
Little later in the second set and Benet forced to send the free ball over and over course Marist takes advantage. Camryn Hannah splits the defense for one of her 6 kills on the night. Marist now with their biggest lead up 17-11.
But Benet Academy gets right back to it and suddenly, the second set it all knotted up at 18s after Ann Marie Remmes gets the block to find floor.
These two temas are so evenly matched… let me remind you this is just the state semifinal game… Marist retakes the lead, just a few points later after Avery Jedry just tips the ball over, 21-20.
Next point, and this just demonstrates how good these two teams really are. Gregus goes for the attempt, Marist digs it out, then a battle at the net and Jendry is quick with the foot to keep the point alive. Colleen McGuire then gets set up and she ends the crazy rally with the kill. 21s all.
Next point… Camryn Hannah sends a monster attempt over only for Hattie Monson to dig it out and then Kyla Kenney to get the kill. Wings lead once more 22-21.
The wings can taste the state championship game… one match point, Colleen McGuire on the outside sends one home that is deflected off Marist for Benet to win the state semifinal in two matches. The redwings move on to face Wheaton Warrenville South in the state championship game for the first time since 2014.
Check out past Benet Academy volleyball highlight’s in our Girls Sports Highlights!
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