Stopping sisters key in semifinal
On paper with the 14th best record in the state at 25-9, Iowa Mennonite could be considered the favorite heading into the Regional Semifinal volleyball game with Belle Plaine (14-11).
That hasn’t kept IMS head coach Dwight Gingerich from studying Belle Plaine in the lead-up to this postseason game, Friday at 7 p.m. at Victor.
Senior Olivia Yutzy has 4.71 kills per set, which is 13th in Class 1A. Right behind her is Belle Plaine senior Kameo Pope with 4.7
“She is very good,” Gingerich said. “She is a very dominant player. She has very good size. She is strong; she hits the ball hard. She is capable of going anywhere. With her size she can go over blocks.”
According to Gingerich, she is a 6-footer, while his tallest front-line player is 5-foot-9.
‘She towers out there above everyone,” Gingerich said. “She is a complete player.”
Her sister, junior Marisa, can be just as dangerous.
“She is also a tremendous athlete and a very sound player,” Gingerich said. “She jumps well, and has a jump serve. Both of those two have high number of aces.”
Marisa is 10th in the state in aces per set with 0.88, among players with at least 10 sets played. Kameo is 12th with 0.86.
IMS is led by senior Casey Perez with 0.71 per set.
“Overall, Casey Perez is our setter, which is unorthodox,” said IMS head coach. “She also gets quite a few kills as a setter. She is very instrumental in all of that happening. Casey is very good and creates a lot of opportunities for our hitters.”
Gingerich said it is rare to have strong hitters at the setter position.
Yutzy has been the main complement that capitalizes on Perez’s assists.
“Olivia Yutzy is one of the top hitters in the state,” Gingerich said.
She is fourth in total kills with 400, one spot ahead of Kameo.