STURGIS | Mitchell rolled to a straight set 25-17, 25-19, 25-9 win over the Sturgis Scoopers on a warm evening at Sturgis Brown High School Friday.
It was the season opener for both Mitchell and Sturgis.
The Kernels powerful outside hitter 6-foot, 4-inch Taylin Alm had the Scoopers on their heels rattling off five straight aces in the opening set. Sturgis battled back couldn't overcome both aces and kills late in the game by Alm who finished the night with 8 aces and 18 kills.
"We expect Taylin to lead us in kills, but we had some other girls step up tonight also," said Mitchell coach Deb Thill.
Thill said she was pleased with the Kernels' balanced attack.
"I thought our setter did awesome and we passed the ball really well," she said.
The key to the straight set victory was taking Sturgis out of their system, Thill said.
Sturgis coach Sharon Peterson said her team is settling into new roations after losing players to graduation. Gone from the 2012 campaign are Lia Meirose, Shannon Wilson, Jayce Winsell, Katie Roth and Molly Hermann.
"It's a new group and they at times played to my expectations," she said.
Kahlie Peterson led Sturgis in kills with 7 and 3 assists, Callie Gabriel followed with 5 kills. Amada Heidrich had 13 set assists, Errin Short had an ace and Halli Holt had 3 digs.
For Mitchell, Emma Schmidt had 25 assists and 4 aces. In running off 17 points in the final set, Schmidt recorded four aces.
For the Kernels, Taylor Sebert recorded 10 digs and Shelly Iburg had 7 kills.
Sturgis, 0-1, will face Belle Fourche at 2:30 p.m. today at Sturgis. The Scoopers are in action next week at Spearfish on Tuesday and against Douglas at home Thursday.
Mitchell, 1-0, faces Spearfish at 1:45 p.m. today at Spearfish. The Kernels play at Pierre on Thursday.