Horner, Aigner band together as Lakes prevails
No doubt both Sara Horner and Emily Aigner had some discussions about the rainy weather they both saw in Orlando this summer.
Also in the bragging rights competition, Aigner has advantage over her Lakes teammate.
That's because the Sky High girls volleyball club she was playing on beat Horner's club for the national title.
Now, back as teammates on the unbeaten Eagles squad, they combined for 11 kills on Tuesday night in Lake Villa. Lakes (4-0) absorbed some tough serving from Wauconda senior Steph Schaer and beat the Bulldogs 25-15, 25-21.
"We are working together really well," Aigner said. "We were ready for this year, as we had a lot of returning starters."
With a nice jump serve, Wauconda junior Susan Karhoff got the Bulldogs off to a good start. But when Haley Halberg went into serve for the Eagles, Lakes surged to a lead the Eagles wouldn't surrender.
Shannon Grant (4 kills) opened the rally with a strong kill. With Grant serving in the first set, the lead jumped to 20-11.
"We've been working on speeding our offense up," said Lakes coach Molly May.
May was quick to point out the steady setting of Stephanie Reed (15 assists).
"She's not afraid," May said. "And she can joust at the net, too."
With Aigner serving in the second set and Grant and Horner (7 kills) taking turns putting the ball away, the Eagles lead surged to a 15-7. And then Schaer began to serve rockets at the Eagles defense.
"It's not a floater,'' said Wauconda first-year coach Alison Williams. "She just lets it rip. She just serves hard."
There were a few aces and a block kill from freshman middle Sara Sexton. She's one of three frosh seeing regular playing time on the varsity.
"Sara is improving quickly," Williams said.
On a serving ace from another freshman, libero Ashley Anderson, the Bulldogs (6-4) had cut the Eagles lead to 17-13. Setter Reed answered back for the Eagles.
Wauconda's last gasp came after consecutive blocks from both Sexton and Karhoff.
Aigner had seen enough of the Wauconda comeback and delivered a gorgeous kill down the line. She then served the game-winning point.
"Wauconda is an established team," Aigner said. "Their team is really good."
Aigner also helped out on defense with 7 digs. Alex Silvola led the Eagles on defense with 10 digs. Grant chipped in with 6 digs. Abbey Buehler helped the Eagles' cause with 3 kills.
Wauconda had some good defense from yet another freshman, as ninth-grader Leanne Sakowicz notched 9 digs
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