By Derek Hoesly


BRODHEAD – Behind the play of senior Amber Pickel the Cardinals (17-12 overall, 4-1 Rock Valley) beat Beloit Turner 25-15, 25-19, 25-15 in a sweep.

Leading 4-3, Brodhead scored five out of the next six points to take a quick 9-4 lead. Senior Kylie Moe had a service ace during the early spurt. The lead ballooned to 18-11 with a 4-0 run. Moe hammered a cross-court kill on the outside and a tip on the outside during the run. Sophomore Erin Nyhus dialed up an ace during the game-changing run.

“Starting is one of our strengths. I think Kylie Moe being able to put the ball away in one of the first plays and Erin Nyhus is such a tough server and consistent server for us. I think we always start off in a tough rotation,” coach Erin Kammerer said.

“We had a nice string of serves started off by Nyhus so that’s always helpful to start that way and we usually keep the momentum and do better. We play better than when we start down right away but I feel like in the first game our passing was tighter and a little bit more controlled,” Pickel said.

Game two was a back and forth battle in the early stages. Game two had six different lead changes in the opening moments. Turner’s Camila Hallmann hammered two spikes. Hallmann had eight kills and was a solid force for the Trojans.

“We knew Hallmann was their big hitter. She did a good job of using our blockers in the front row so she did a nice job of finding the floor,” Kammerer said.

“She’s a smart player and she understands the floor great. She knows when to tip and push and hit. She picked apart our weaknesses so for her to do that kudos to her,” Pickel said.

With the score tied at six, Brodhead went on a 5-0 run to get some breathing room. Senior Blake Boegli ignited the run with a kill on the outside and freshman Abbey Johnson delivered an ace.

It looked like the Cardinals put game two away with another 5-0 run to go up 18-10. Nyhus delivered a string of tough serves including an ace during the game-changing run. Beloit Turner clawed back into game two slicing the Cardinals’ lead to 21-15. Back-to-back aces by Tess Schober sparked the Trojans rally. Brodhead turned to Moe, who hammered a clutch kill on the outside to halt the Trojans’ momentum.

“That kill was huge. She’s a senior. We started to let them back into the game a little bit. Our serve receive got a little bit sloppy there and for her to put that point away allowed us to get the momentum again,” Pickel said.

“Kylie came with a lot of power tonight with her hitting. She really did a good job of swinging hard and I also thought she did a good job of mixing it up,” Kammerer said.

Beloit Turner answered with a 4-0 run to cut Brodhead’s lead to 22-19. Pickel, who had a huge night, tattooed a kill in the middle to the back corner to slam the door on the Trojans comeback hopes. Pickel had a match-high 19 kills and was a lethal force throughout the night.

“That kill just gave us momentum and let us take a deep breath and relax a little bit. We started to let them back into the game and we were starting to get a little hyped up oh my god they’re back in it,” Pickel said.


“Amber’s walking away with 19 kills and in that second set she stepped up and put the ball away and then served out the game. I think she did a nice job of showing good leadership and finishing the set for us,” Kammerer said.

Brodhead carried that momentum into game three taking a 12-4 lead. Pickel had two spikes and a perfectly executed dink in the middle. Boegli had a tip and a smash down the line on the outside. Moe dialed up an ace during the early blitz to set the tone in game three. The Cardinals dominated the tempo of game three.

“My players want to play hard and make it a point finishing in three. Turner did a great job of using our blocks in the front row and never giving up and it was good to see a little poise from our team to be able to come back in set three and have a little more control,” Kammerer said.

“Our goal is always to get out of here in three and make everyone realize that we’re a good team so in order for us to do that it’s all about serving and passing. I think we showed everyone tonight that we’re a great team,” Pickel said.

Trojans’ Ashley Himmelmann hammered a kill on the outside to trim the Cardinals’ lead to 16-10. One area where Kammerer was not happy about was the net play.

“That’s where I’m disappointed tonight. I felt like our blockers got a little more used than we normally do setting a good block. They got a lot of touches on it where we usually get more of a block touch to the other side but it stayed on our side tonight,” Kammerer said.

“Our net play was not the strongest tonight. We struggled with getting blocks and knowing where to stop the block. They don’t hit as far out as we usually see so trying to adjust to set up a different kind of block was a little bit of a challenge tonight,” Pickel said.

The closest Beloit Turner would get in game three was 16-12. It was fitting that Pickel would finish off the sweep with a kill in the middle.

Moe chipped in 12 kills in the match. Johnson led the Cardinals with 31 assists. Nyhus led Brodhead with five aces. Moe added four aces in the contest. Moe led the Cardinals with nine digs.

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