Volleyball: Middleton wins Big Eight crown

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Saturday, October 19, 2013

Middleton avenged a regular-season loss to Sun Prairie by winning the Big Eight Conference volleyball tournament on Saturday in Beloit.

The two teams emerged from pool play unbeaten and met in the championship match, where Middleton swept, 25-22, 25-20.

Janesville Craig finished fifth; Janesville Parker was 10th.

The Cougars went 3-1 in pool play, but missed out on making the gold championship bracket on a tiebreaker.

“It was an up-and-down day,” coach Blake Budrow said. “Tournaments are kind of like that sometimes. Kayley Hackett did a nice job setting the ball. And Aly Raymond hit .422 today, so she did well mixing it up.”

Craig and Madison Memorial, which tied at 5-4 during the regular season, met for fifth place, and the Cougars won both games by a score of 25-19.

Parker was without senior setter Claire Fox and went 0-5 on the day. The Vikings did get a solid effort from sophomore Andrea Lawrence, who played at the varsity level for the first time.

“She stepped in and did a wonderful job setting,” Parker coach Kathy Bullis said. “She has been on JV and has been an outside hitter, but she has great hands. And she plays great defense. And she led our team with six aces.”

The postseason continues for the Vikings and Cougars on Thursday when they play in WIAA regional semifinal games.

Parker travels to Kenosha Tremper.

“It’ll be nice to have Claire back,” Bullis said. “We’re just going to have to use the little victories that we had from this weekend and move forward.”

Craig hosts Waterford at 7 p.m.

“We tell them it’s a brand new season for everybody,” Budrow said. “We can’t look at seedings or past records, we have to go out and play our best ball.”

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