The 2019 MHSSA High school Volleyball Season has started and the Ann Arbor Skyline Volleyball team is excited to return to the court. The Eagles are coming off an exciting 2018 season highlighted by their first District Championship in school history. This year, the eagles return a talented group of players. The Eagles return five seniors, Stacie Warner (DS/S), Megan Brummet (DS/L), MCkenna Pfeffer (L/DS), Kendal Murray (M/OH), and Greta Shorer (MH). The Eagles also return six Juniors Sasha Akuezue (MH), Lydia Crane (MH/OH), Claire Davis (S/RH), Clare Salatta (OH/RH), Melissa Breiner (RH), and Delaney Breiner (MH). Lauren Lee (S/RH), Nora Halloran (MH/RS), and Sophie Schrag (MH/RS) are Sophomores, and Harper Murray is the lone Freshmen. The Eagles are led by Head Coach Chris Cristian who is in his third season at the helm for the Eagles.
The Eagles traveled to the West Side of the state and competed in the Grand Haven Invitational on August 24th. The Eagles got off to a good start in pool play, beating Caledonia, West Ottawa, and Fruitport. The Eagles beat Caledonia and Fruitport in two sets. West Ottawa won the first set against Skyline 25-20, but the Eagles won the next two sets, helping them qualify for the Gold Bracket.
The Eagles played enison High School for the first round of the Gold bracket. Jenison came out the gates and advanced to a 12-4 lead before Coach Cristian called a timeout. The Eagles closed the gap to 15-9 with great defense and momentum on offense. The Eagles scored eight consecutive points highlighted by 6 aces from freshmen Harper Murray, taking the lead 17-15 before Jenison called timeout. The Eagles went on to win the first set against Jenison 25-19. The Eagles took the momentum from set one and convincingly beat Jenison 25-15 in the second set.
The Eagles faced host Grand Haven High School in the Semi-finals of the Gold Bracket. Grand Haven won the first set 25-22 and the Eagles bounced back to win the second set 25-18. The Eagles loss momentum in the third set and loss to Grand Haven 16-14.
On Monday, Skyline traveled to Saline to play in the annual Jamboree tournament, which consisted of Saline High School, Bedford High School, Ann Arbor Huron, Monroe High School, and Pioneer High School. All set to warm up and excited to play against Bedford High School, the Skyline Eagles were faced with an unexpected challenge. During warm up Sophomore Lauren Lee (Setter) landed on the foot of a Bedford player, dislocating her ankle and fracturing her leg. Surprised and shocked, the Eagles were initially stunned by the injury of their teammate. Taking time to regroup, the players exited the gym, joined in unity, and returned to the court to play Bedford.
The Eagles, faced with the injury of their teammate, and never beating Bedford in school history loss the first set 25-23. The Eagles were not rattled and beat Bedford 25-17 and 25-13 in the next two sets. The Eales took the momentum and forged ahead against Pioneer high school, beating them in two sets, 25-18 and 25-16.
The Eagles next opponent were the Hornets of Saline High School. Saline won the first game 23-25, but the Eagles won the next two sets 25-19 and 25-23. The Eagles then went on to beat Ann Arbor Huron in two straight sets. Last but not least the Eagles faced the Monroe Trojans. The Eagles beat Monroe in two sets, beating them twice by a score of 25-18 and winning the SEC Red Jamboree for the first time in school history.
The Eagles traveled to Bedford on August 30th to play in the Bedford end of Summer Classic. They advanced to the Gold Bracket by winning six matches. They lost to highly ranked Division 3 Monroe Saint Mary’s Catholic Central.