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Area Female Athlete: Glenz excels in parts of game that aren't noticeable

For the first time in Shania Glenz's illustrious volleyball career, older sister Jordyn is not by her side. And while it's been an adjustment for the middle Glenz daughter, it hasn't resulted in a lack of success for her or the Verndale Pirates v...

Shania Glenz of Verndale bumps the ball against Wadena-Deer Creek this season. Kelly Humphrey/Brainerd Dispatch
Shania Glenz of Verndale bumps the ball against Wadena-Deer Creek this season. Kelly Humphrey/Brainerd Dispatch

For the first time in Shania Glenz's illustrious volleyball career, older sister Jordyn is not by her side.

And while it's been an adjustment for the middle Glenz daughter, it hasn't resulted in a lack of success for her or the Verndale Pirates volleyball team.

In limited action during the Pirates' 3-0 Park Region Conference win over Pillager Tuesday, Glenz posted eight kills, eight digs, four ace serves and a block.

Last week, she tallied 16 kills, 14 digs and three blocks in a 3-0 win over Staples-Motley and added 27 kills, eight digs and three blocks in a 3-2 win over New York Mills.

"I've definitely had to be more aggressive, louder and more encouraging to everyone on the team," said Shania Glenz. "I've definitely had to step up and try and take my sister's place."

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Shania Glenz

  • Year: Senior
  • School: Verndale
  • Sport: Volleyball
  • Position: Middle hitter
  • Highlights: Finished with 43 kills, 22 digs and six blocks in two wins last week

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Glenz is playing the entire rotation this season. Last year, she played just the front row to preserve her shoulder. She's still not jump serving, but she is serving effectively.

This season, Glenz has 454 kills with a .428 hitting percentage. She has 43 blocks, 31 ace serves on 93-percent serving and 272 digs. But according to her, her biggest improvement has been her passing. She's received 483 serves with just 17 errors this season.

"I've worked very hard at becoming a better passer just because this year I haven't had somebody come in and play the back row for me," Shania said. "So I had to really focus on that.

"It's been nice to stay in the game and keep up the energy instead of coming in and out. I've been doing some hitting from the back row, which is fun getting a different hitting aspect of the game."

At the Underwood tournament Thursday, Glenz posted 65 kills, 42 digs, three ace serves and two blocks as the Pirates finished 3-1 and in third place. The Pirates will enter the West Subsection 5-1A playoffs with a 22-6 record.

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Pirates head coach and Shania's mother Shelley Glenz said despite the graduation of many seniors from last year's team, the team has enjoyed similar success. One reason are the little things her senior middle hitter is doing.

"She really excels in the unseen parts of the game with supporting and encouraging her teammates," said Shelley Glenz. "She's a really good leader that way. She's an exceptional player in the unseen or not so obvious parts of the game, which make her a good teammate. That's where she steps up and beyond other players of her caliber. Trained volleyball eyes see that."

Shania agrees: "You definitely have to concentrate on them. The mental part of the game is such a huge part, maybe even more than the physical part like the skills. Just encouraging and making sure everyone's energy is high and that we're all being aggressive and trying. That's more important, in my opinion, than any physical part of the game."

Last year, Glenz finished with 462 kills helping Verndale to its first state tournament appearance.

"I think if we stay mentally strong, we'll get there again, if we don't have any mental breakdowns or anything like that," Shania said. "Physically, we're ready to go back and we're all prepared."

 

Other notable performances:

Swimming and diving: Lili Schneider, Staples-Motley, won the 200-yard freestyle and 100 breaststroke against Perham.

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Emily Veronen, Staples-Motley, won the 200-yard individual medley and 100 backstroke.

Alice Foote, Little Falls, won the 50- and 100-yard freestyles and was on two winning relays against St. Cloud Cathedral.

Tennis: Katie Edin, Staples-Motley, won the Section 8-1A singles title.

Alyssa Golden-Alex Stone, Pequot Lakes, won the South Subsection 7-1A doubles title.

Volleyball: Jamie Nelson, Crosby-Ironton, finished with 40 set assists, 15 digs, two kills, two blocks and two ace serves against Pine River-Backus to reach 1,000 career set assists. She added 47 set assists, 13 digs, 4 ace serves and 3 kills against Hill City.

Kaitlyn Luksik, Pillager, finished with 22 digs and 18 digs against Swanville and 17 digs, eight kills and 2 ace serves against Sebeka.

Karli Skog, finished with 23 kills, 16 digs and 14 set assists at the Apple Valley tournament.

Miah Hanson, Pine River-Backus, finished with 49 kills and 12 blocks at the Brainerd tournament.

Related Topics: VOLLEYBALL
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