RECAP: #1 Bronson Survives #4 Schoolcraft in 5-Set Classic

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Bronson’s players and students celebrate their Regional championship.   Ashton Wronikowski (#9) led the Vikings with 20 kills. 

The Bronson Vikings earned their third consecutive Class C Regional championship Thursday at Watervliet High School, winning in five sets over the Schoolcraft Eagles, 21-25, 25-19, 23-25, 25-17, 15-5.  The top-ranked Vikings’ push for a third straight state title continues, ending Schoolcraft’s season in the Regional final for the second time in three years.

The match started tight from the very beginning, seeing five lead changes in the first part of set #1.  Schoolcraft got the lead for good with their 14th point for a 25-21 win.   Bronson battled back and never trailed the second set, taking it 25-19.    The Eagles had the first point of the third, but trailed for almost the entirety of the set.  Schoolcraft was able to erase a five-point hole and reclaim the lead on their 20th point, narrowly staying ahead for the 25-23 win.

Schoolcraft carried the momentum to a 7-4 start to the fourth set, but the lead was short lived and the Vikings took control for a 25-17 fourth set win.   In the decisive fifth set, Ashton Wronikowski was dominant for Bronson.   All match, she was lethal off short sets by Kiana Mayer, tallying 15 kills in the first four sets.   In the fifth, Wronikowski grabbed five kills, including the final two of the match, punching Bronson’s ticket to the Elite Eight.

Along with Wronikowski’s 20, Jolie Smoker had 12 kills unofficially and Keona Salesman had 10.   Kiera Lasky added five aces, putting top-ranked Bronson at 56-9-2 overall.  Fourth-ranked Schoolcraft finishes at 37-14-2, led by 15 kills from Andelyn Simkins.   Senior Paige Gebben added eight in her final match, she and Brooke Crissman graduate for the Eagles.

It will be #1 vs #2 from the final coaches poll in the quarterfinal, as Bronson meets second-ranked Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central Tuesday at 7 p.m. from Loy Norrix High School in Kalamazoo.

Listen back to Thursday’s Regional final below:

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