Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Will the Bulldogs Take a Bite Out of D1 S5: A Preview of Girls Division One Sectional Five

There's more to say about this sectional than we have time to say it. But we'll try. Two teams boast Bradford Beach Jam champions: Oconomowoc (Lindsay Gosh and Lauren Gnewuch) and Waukesha West (Ashley Applequist and Jamie Mueller). Two teams have to replace the players who finished one-two in last year's Gatorade Player of the Year voting: Menomonee Falls (Janelle Gabrielsen) and Watertown (Debbie Stadick). Three teams have players who were on the Badger Region HP team that took first in Tucson: Menonomee Falls (Becca Fuchs), Hamilton (Stephanie Kirchner) and Arrowhead (Janelle Hobbs). And at least one team, Cedarburg, boasts a 2009 NCAA D1 recruit (Loyola-bound Karen Sueppel). So how are we going to sort all that out? One sentence at a time.

Contenders: Arrowhead, Cedarburg, Germantown, Hamilton, Hartford Union, Homestead, Kettle Moraine, Menomonee Falls, Milwaukee Vincent, Mukwonago, Oconomowoc, Watertown, Waukesha North, Waukesha South and Waukesha West.

Top Finishers Last Year: Both Watertown and Menomonee Falls won sectionals. Watertown went on to win the division one state title. Hamilton reached the sectional semifinal.

Random Notes: While Menomonee Falls loses last year's Gatorade Player of the Year (UW freshman Janelle Gabrielsen), they return sophomore Becca Fuchs (123 kills), senior Mollie Moesch (198 kills) and junior Catie Fredrich (225 kills). We're guessing sophomore Dayna Simmons will get a shot at setting since she's the only returning setter listed in last year's state program.

Cedarburg has senior middle Karen Sueppel (North Shore player of the year) who will likely be right up there with Catholic Central's Carol Henney in this fall's state player of the year voting. They also have a new coach Doug Hext, whose resume includes state titles with Kettle Moraine Lutheran.

With the graduation of second-team all-state middle Lindsay Schwartz and first-team all-state middle Debbie Stadick, Watertown will likely look to their outsides for offense. Third-team all-state junior Erienne Lauersdorf and powerful junior Leanna Lillge will be two of the outsides they'll turn to.

Arrowhead will rely heavily on senior Jackie Pasholk (second-team all-Classic Eight) and junior Janelle Hobbs. Germantown will turn to senior Ashley Jors (first-team North Shore). Hamilton has the aforementioned junior middle Stephanie Kirchner. Homestead has senior Stacie Hoffman. Oconomowoc has super sophomores Lindsay Gosh and Lauren Gnewuch.

Waukesha North has sophomore Chelsea Sheldon (HM all-conference as a freshman) and senior Amy Hill. In addition to junior setter Libby Woodford, Waukesha South will turn to junior middles Ashley Wendt and Sarah Dreifke, among others. Waukesha West has senior setter Jamie Mueller and senior middle Ashley Applequist.

OK, we know we're missing some big names. Feel free to help fill in any blanks. Once we're through with this whirlwind August, we'll retrace our steps and correct what needs correcting.

Our Prediction: Cedarburg over Waukesha West in three.

Next Up: Girls Division One Sectional Six


Anonymous said...

A little respect for Homestead please? Greatest overachiever at the Joust? Our only notable player Stacie Hoffman?? While she is the glue, the other components should be heralded as well. Junior OH Erica Reetz injury free (until a mishap at NS Conf Tourn) is a force. Junior libero Andrea Voss is relentless on D. Freshman OH Claire Raddatz playing with the poise of an upperclassman. This is truly a case of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts. This is a true 'team' :)

VBuberalles said...

Noted. We did these previews back in August at the clip of a new sectional every day. We knew they were far from perfect. Our hope was to publish comments like yours throughout the season to help fill in the blanks we knew we were leaving. Lately, we've tried to double back and do posts on some of the under-reported top seeds like Homestead. Look for the Highlanders to be featured in a post between now and first serve on Thursday. Thanks for reading the blog and taking the time to comment.

Anonymous said...

thanks for the reply. No offense intended; just thought it was worth mentioning. Looking forward to the regional/sectional/state matches at all levels!

VBuberalles said...

None taken. It was worth mentioning on your part. The more all of us talk up the positive things that are going on, the more the sport will grow in the state. And since none of us can know all the good things that are happening everywhere, it's important for you and others to keep those positive comments coming. Thanks again for reading.