The Oakland-Craig Lady Knights traveled to Pender last Thursday night to compete in the Northeast Nebraska (NEN) Classic tournament. They went 1-1 on Thursday night with a win over Pender and a loss to Wayne. Thursday night determined which division the teams will compete in (Gold, Silver, or Bronze). With O-C’s 1-1 night they were placed in the Silver Division.
The tournament continued Saturday morning in Wisner as O-C was joined in the Silver Division by North Bend Central, West Point-Beemer and Guardian Angels Central Catholic (GACC). The Lady Knights finished the weekend with 3 wins and 2 losses. That finished three teams in a tie for first place. First place was determined first by set wins and points, which included Oakland-Craig, GACC and North Bend Central. That left Oakland-Craig and GACC in a tie for first. Oakland Craig won the head to head game and therefore was announced as the Silver Division Champion.
The Lady Knights face up against the host school, Pender for their first game on Thursday night. The Lady Knight came out with a lot of confidence and quickly jumped up on Pender. Kennedy Benne started with the first 3 points, Ashten Rennerfeldt had a 3-point run and Makenna Pearson had a 3 point run and O-C was up 14-6. Josie Richards added a short run while Pender had a problem getting anything going much on service runs as the Lady Knights rolled to a first set 25-14 win.
The second set was much the same. With O-C tied 5-5, Bailey Helzer had a 9-point run on serves and the Lady Knights opened up a 14-5 lead. They never looked back as they rolled to a second set win of 25-14.
The Lady Knights ran into a tough opponent in Wayne. Wayne went on to be undefeated for the entire tournament and taking the championship in the Gold Division. The Lady Knights played them tough. The first set was back and forth most of the way with neither team getting much in runs until Wayne broke out with a couple short runs to go ahead 18-12. With Wayne in the lead 23-16, O-C made a good run with Makenna Pearson serving to come back to 20-23 before Wayne took it out with the last two points. O-C fell 20-25.
The second set Wayne jumped up 5-1. Josie served it to within point and the two teams battled it out till Wayne had a 4-point run to go up 19-14. Ashten Rennerfeldt had a 4 point run to bring the Lady Knights tied it up at 19-19. The two teams battled to the end of the set. Mya Guzinski served the ball to bring O-C to a 23-23 tie again. But Wayne was able to get the last two points to end the set and O-C fell 23-25 and 0-2 in sets. That place O-C in the Silver Division for Saturday morning.
Vs West Point-Beemer
The Lady Knights first opponent was the West Point Beemer Lady Cadets. With the score tied in the first set 3-3 Ashten Rennerfeldt had a 5-point run to put O-C up 8-3. Three short runs by Bailey Helzer, Mya Guzinski and Makenna Pearson put O-C up 18-7. But the Lady Cadets were not done yet as they battled back to 17-20. But the Lady Knights took the set out 25-21.
The second set the Lady Knights started out tight with the Lady Cadets. But, with the score tied 13-13, Bailey Helzer had a back breaking service run of 9-points and O-C was sitting on the verge of going out with a 23-13 lead. Mya Guzinski served the winning point for O-C’s 25-14 set win and match win of 2-0.
The Lady Knights came up against arch nemesis Guardian Angels Central Catholic. O-C started with the first 3 points of the match. But GACC quickly overcame that and after a 4-point service run led 10-6. The Lady Knights stayed in the hunt but fell in the first set 20-25.
The second set GACC moved ahead in the early going 5-3. Bailey Helzer’s short service run brought O-C back to within one 8-9. GACC moved ahead again 16-10. They got up over O-C 21-15. It was looking dismal for the Lady Knights. But the fight was still in them as Mya Guzinski had a 3-point run to come back to 21-22. Down 21-23, Makenna Pearson came up to serve and served out the set for the 25-23 win.
That come from behind seemed to take the steam out of GACC. GACC started the serve but O-C broke the serve and after Kennedy Benne served O-C led 4-1. Bailey Helzer had a 5-point run the Lady Knights led 12-5. Helzer had a late run that put O-C up 25-14 and the Lady Knights took the set out breaking a GACC serve. O-C took the match 2-1.
Vs. North Bend Central
The Lady Knights final opponent in the tournament was North Bend Central who had beat West Point Beemer and lost to GACC. North Bend took early control and went up 6-2. Ashten Rennerfeldt had a 6-point service run and O-C was up 9-6. NBC took the lead back 12-10. Mya Guzinski had a short run and put O-C back up 14-12 and short runs by Kennedy Benne and Josie Richards put O-C up 21-15. The Lady Knights held that lead to the end taking the opening set 25-20.
The second set O-C had an early run by Ashten Rennerfeldt that put them up 7-2. But with O-C leading 10-4 NBC had a good run that brought them back to within one, 9-10. GACC moved ahead 19-16 and held that to the end taking the second set 25-22. The third and deciding set started with NBC moving out in front 6-1. Josie Richards had a short run to come within one 5-6. But a couple of runs by GACC put them on top 14-7 The Lady Knights could not recover from that as GACC took the set out 25-16 and took the match 2-1.