Reprint of an article by JIM WHYMER on Blue Water Sports Network
posted September 27, 2012
It’s a little too early to be talking about crucial or must-win matches in the Macomb Area Conference Red Division volleyball race.
But when you have one of the best teams in the state within the division, stealing a victory on the road would be big.
That’s the situation for the Port Huron Northern squad, which is 2-1 in the league and 20-5-1 overall.
The Huskies travel to Macomb Dakota tonight to take on the unbeaten Cougars in a MAC Red Division showdown.
“We saw Dakota in the MAC Kickoff Tournament back in August,” Langolf said. “We beat them a game when they sat their star player. They are very good. I haven’t seen the latest rankings, but they are probably the No. 1 team in the state.
Northern is coming off a championship at the Port Huron High Invitational Saturday and a MAC Red win against Fraser.
“We’re playing very well right now as a team,” Langolf said. “In my 9 years of coaching at Northern, this is the best team I’ve had.
“It’s the most complete team. We’ve been stronger in certain areas over the years, but this is a group of good all-around team players.”
Langolf said the Huskies will receive a big boost tonight with the return of 5-foot-10 senior McKenzie Lance, who has been sidelined with a high ankle sprain.
Leading the talented group of Huskies is 5-9 senior Casey Fealko, who is a left side hitter.
“Casey jumps so well and is a very smart player,” Langolf said. “She is the best player in the area. She also should win the (Doris) Teachout Award (Times Herald’s top female senior athlete in the Blue Water Area). Very good soccer and basketball player.”
Joining Fealko at the net is her younger sister, Riley, a sophomore, Alex Shell and Rachel Kolar. Sophomore Becca Richards, who also excels in basketball as a point guard, handles the setting duties.
Junior Amy Tseng is in her second year on the varsity. She is the team’s libero.
Northern lost in the finals of the Livonia Ladywood to a strong Canton squad. The Huskies reached the semifinals of the Cros-Lex Invitational before falling to eventual champion Pontiac Notre Dame Prep.
At Port Huron High, Langolf’s squad beat Cros-Lex in the semifinals and Anchor Bay in the title match.
Richards paced the Huskies with 129 assists in the tournament, while Casey Fealko had 49 kills. Kolar and Shell chipped in with 23 and 22 kills, respectively. Riley Fealko added 20 kills and Tseng had 51 digs.