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Prep volleyball: West Fargo Sheyenne moves on to state semifinals with win over Bismarck St. Mary’s

The Mustangs won in straight sets over the Saints on Thursday to advance in the Class A state tournament.

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West Fargo Sheyenne team members celebrate a point against Bismarck St. Mary's in the quarterfinals of the North Dakota Class A state volleyball tournament at the Bismarck Events Center on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022.
David Samson/The Forum
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BISMARCK — West Fargo Sheyenne prevailed over the Bismarck St. Mary’s Saints on Thursday to advance to the Class A state volleyball semifinals.

The East No. 1 seed Mustangs defeated the West No. 4 seed Saints 25-20, 25-14, 25-15.

“It was really nice finishing in three,” said Mustangs coach Leah Newton. “I felt as the match went on, we loosened up a little more and started playing more of our Mustang style volleyball.”

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West Fargo Sheyenne's Brooke Johnson sets the ball against Bismarck St. Mary's in the quarterfinals of the North Dakota Class A state volleyball tournament at the Bismarck Events Center on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022.
David Samson/The Forum

After a slow start in set one, which had the Saints and Mustangs in lockstep until the score was 20-19, Newton calmed her players down and reminded them to have fun.

It paid off as they won sets two and three by at least 10 points each.

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West Fargo Sheyenne team members celebrate a point against Bismarck St. Mary's in the quarterfinals of the North Dakota Class A state volleyball tournament at the Bismarck Events Center on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022.
David Samson/The Forum

“The biggest thing I told them is that we just had to relax a little bit, have some fun, enjoy it and just play ball,” she said. “That was the biggest thing was just having fun with each other, enjoying the experience and being loose out there.”

In both the second and third sets, Sheyenne put together lengthy runs to establish control.

In set two, Brooke Johnson helmed the first of two runs, a six-point spurt that was followed by another four-point barrage kicked off when Isabelle Albrecht dumped the ball over the net for a kill.

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West Fargo Sheyenne's Khloe Brown and Isabelle Albrecht block a shot from Bismarck St. Mary's Mykendra Messer in the quarterfinals of the North Dakota Class A state volleyball tournament at the Bismarck Events Center on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022.
David Samson/The Forum

Albrecht followed that up for the next Mustangs point with a block while Reagan Bogenreif served. Those two runs put Sheyenne up 19-9.

In set three, a kill by Bogenreif set up a four-point run which included an ace from libero Mia Engel. After an errant Mustangs return flew out of bounds for a St. Mary’s point, the Mustangs went on another run for five more points — including an ace by Johnson — to build a 16-8 lead.

Kailee Waasdorp had a strong performance for Sheyeene to lead the team in both kills (11) and digs (10) while Albrecht had six blocks.

Brooke Johnson (16) and Kennedy Colter (15) combined for 31 assists for Sheyenne.

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West Fargo Sheyenne's Kallie Dodds bumps a return shot against Bismarck St. Mary's in the quarterfinals of the North Dakota Class A state volleyball tournament at the Bismarck Events Center on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022.
David Samson/The Forum

Newton said that she was happy with how both her setters and hitters shook things up with their approaches throughout the match.

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“I really liked that our setters were mixing up the ball quite a bit,” she said. “And our hitters were doing a great job of throwing out different shots and I think that complemented that.”

The Mustangs move on to the Class A semifinals Friday at 7 p.m. while the Saints head to the consolation bracket for a 3 p.m. game.

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West Fargo Sheyenne's Reagan Bogenreif tracks down the ball against Bismarck St. Mary's in the quarterfinals of the North Dakota Class A state volleyball tournament at the Bismarck Events Center on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022.
David Samson/The Forum
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West Fargo Sheyenne's Reagan Bogenreif leaps for a kill shot against Bismarck St. Mary's in the quarterfinals of the North Dakota Class A state volleyball tournament at the Bismarck Events Center on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2022.
David Samson/The Forum

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