Highland Park vs. Monticello Volleyball

By: Mary Koch

The final game for the 2021 volleyball season at Highland was on Friday 11/12 at the Xcel Energy Center.

The team played for 5th place against Monticello High School in the AAA consolation semifinal. The game was close, but Monticello won in the fifth set.

Outside, Kiyomi Callahan, one of the team captains, had the most kills at 19, and the team had 41 kills, 189 attempts, and 39 errors. Monticello had 47 kills, 181 attempts, and 31 errors.

Highland had 4 service aces and 4 errors, and Monticello had 11 aces and 9 errors. Bella Kottke had 3 solo blocks, and Kiyomi had 1. Highland had 3 block errors and 4 assist blocks. Monticello had 6 solo blocks and 2 errors.

The game went better than their game on Wednesday 11/10, against Marshall where they lost 3-0. The team’s defense was struggling which made it hard to get a good kill.

The coach said that the team played better and with more energy, and it was a close game.

Highland won the first set 25-18, but they lost 25-22 in the second. Monticello won again 25-15 in the third game, and Highland won 25-20 in the fourth set. Monticello broke the tie in the fifth set winning 15-8.

On Monticello, Peyton Konz had the most kills at 12, and Natalie Emmerich had 11. Highland had 99 total digs, and Monticello had 92.

One student said, “Highland did a good job moving on from the last game and playing well.”

A player on the team said, “We fought hard and played some of our best volleyball, but in the end fell short. It was an amazing, history making season since we haven’t been to state since 1977 and I wouldn’t want to do it on a team with anyone else.”

The team ended up 8th in state for their first time at state since 1977. The season overall went really well. Both captains, Kiyomi Callahan and Azeria Stagg, graduate this year along with Joleene Acon, Delaney Sis, and Alysa Monteagudo.

Vikings vs Packers recap

By: Musab Mohamud

In another nail biting affair the Minnesota Vikings have squeezed out another close victory. In true Vikings’ fashion it took a game ending rally to finally finish off the Aaron Rodgers led Packers.

Rodgers had another game where he continued to fuel his MVP candidacy, but his attempts proved futile and he was outshone by the budding superstar Justin Jefferson who hauled in 8 catches for 169 yards and 2 touchdowns. The young receiver was a scourge to the opposing secondary and continued to torch anyone who lined up across from him.

Jaire Alexander’s absence was sorely felt with Kirk Cousins seeming to complete passes at will. 

A long-standing rivalry between these 2 teams has resulted in some truly incredible games, and this one was no different. With both teams combining for 65 points and 911 yards, and another surprisingly good performance by a coaching staff who have been lackluster at times throughout the season.

During some games this season, the play calling has been downright pathetic, with many fans calling for Zimmer to be fired. His continued insistence on running the ball, even though he has such a star-studded receiver corps, has turned much of the fanbase on him. Continued last gasp wins are unsustainable, shown by the Vikings losing many close games throughout the season.

However, there are glimpses of hope within, with the emergence of many young stars and a multitude of draft picks in the coming draft, the Vikings are set up for success.

Continued success from last week’s impressive performance against the Los Angeles Chargers has some Vikings fans hoping for a deep playoff run. One hopeful Vikings fan says, “It’s very doable, Captain Kirk can take us to the promised land.”

Many others are hoping the inevitable close game losses are a thing of the past. With a hot and cold 49ers team on the horizon, the Vikings can hope to finally break the .500 mark. The 49ers hold the same record as the Vikings and are coming off a victory over the Super Bowl contending Rams, and the bottom of the barrel Jaguars. With a potent offense on both sides the game is shaping up to be another thriller. With a make or break attitude and a very volatile game plan, this game is supremely important to the Vikings.