They are in it together.
The Brown City High School volleyball program has quickly become a state powerhouse. The team has thrived against local competition and when the playoffs began, the team took its game to an even higher level.
That leads us back to the current moment, as Brown City (44-9-5) prepares for a showdown at 2 p.m. Thursday with Adrian Madison at the Kellogg Center in Battle Creek. The winner will advance to the Class C finals.
“They play together and feed off each other,” Brown City coach Jenna Welke said. “If someone is down, everyone else is doing everything they can to bring them up because we are a team and one unit. I think they really showed that.”
On Tuesday, Brown City faced the worse situation imaginable. They got off to a slow start against Shelby and dropped the first two sets. But that didn’t stop them from coming back and running off three consecutive sets to advance to Thursday’s state semifinal.
“We are doing really well in pressure situations,” Welke said. “We have never went to five sets all season. I didn’t know how we would come out. But we stayed composed and stayed focused and got the job done.
“I feel comfortable with them. I know our leadership will take over in those moments. We are calm. We are fine and we are going to roll and keep going with it.”
Welke’s faith in her team paid off on Tuesday as she decided to let them play through their struggles.
“Coach works with us in practice on those intense situations and we know they give you five sets for a reason,” Brown City senior Becki Krause said. “We didn’t get down on ourselves. Half of our team experienced going to Battle Creek last year. They wanted to experience that again. We kept telling each other to fight
“Last year when we went, we had a lot of nerves. It was new. Now we are going back with experience and that will definitely help us. We will be more comfortable this year. We know we have to play our game. If we play to our ability we are going to do great things. We are going to try to take it one step further this year.”
One step further would mean a berth in the state finals and a shot at the state title.
“We knew what we wanted,” Brown City junior Alexia Mason said. “We wanted to move on and we had to turn it around. We are going to take (the semifinals) like any other game. Like it’s nothing special. We have to play tomorrow and it’s all on us.”
Contact Joseph Hayes at (810) 989-6268 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @Joseph_Hayes11.