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Osceola's fast start ends St. Croix Central volleyball season

The Osceola volleyball team has built a reputation for quick starts in their matches this season.

The St. Croix Central volleyball hoped to combat that reputation in last Tuesday's opening round match in the WIAA Division 2 regional tournaments.

Try as they might, the Panthers couldn't stop Osceola from putting together another ferocious start. Osceola floored the Panthers by winning the opening game 25-2.

Central was more competitive in the final two games, but couldn't get a win. Osceola took those games 25-12 and 25-20.

Central co-coach Laura Lee said the team's goal was to be extremely talkative and energetic in an attempt to get into the heads of the Osceola players. But once the match started, the plan vanished.

"I think everyone froze," Lee said. "Osceola was tough, but not out of reach. We didn't execute our plan."

Lee said the Panthers calmed down after the first game and played progressively better, nearly winning the third game.

Leading the attack for Central on Tuesday was senior Kelly Harrington.

"She ran 'quicks' in the middle as a right-side player and swung hard on right side," Lee said. Lee also credited sophomore middle hitter with getting a touch on a large number of Osceola's hit attempts.

Lee said the Panthers felt they made significant improvement this season and the team feels that its record does not show how far it progressed this season.

"They have a positive attitude about what they achieved. In the years to come, we will continue to grow," Lee pledged.