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Greg DeVillers / Forum Communications , Published November 15 2012

Linton-HMB tops Dickinson Trinity in Class B volleyball quarterfinals

MINOT, N.D. – Nicole Nieuwsma is on the humble side on the volleyball court.

“She doesn’t realize how good she is,” Linton-Hazelton-Moffit-Braddock coach Jaime Richter said of her sophomore outside hitter. “When she got all-district, she was shocked. It was like, ‘Who, me?’ ”

Nieuwsma showed how good she can be Thursday in the quarterfinals of the North Dakota Class B high school volleyball tournament. Her hitting got the Lions on the roll in the opening set, and she finished with 14 kills as Linton-HMB swept Dickinson Trinity 25-16, 25-13, 25-14.

“I don’t think of myself as being a great player,” Nieuwsma said. “At the start of the year, I was afraid of making mistakes. I’m not as shy about it as I used to be. I’m starting to really like hitting.”

Nieuwsma not only had a match-high kill total. Her attacks came at a key stretch of the match.

Trinity started fast, holding leads of 6-1 and 12-7 in the opening set. But four kills by McKenna Flyberg sparked a 7-0 run that gave the Lions a 14-12 lead. After Trinity tied the score at 14, Nieuwsma set the tone for the rest of the match. The Lions closed the opening set on an 11-2 run, with Nieuwsma getting seven kills in the run.

“That was so awesome, to get on a roll like that,” Nieuwsma said. “It got the energy on the team going.”

Said Richter: “We took that big run and it gave us momentum. We finally found a groove.”

LHMB (kills-blocks-service aces): Nieuwsma 14-1-0, Flyberg 11-0-1, Larson 7-1-4, Gefroh 4-1-0, Gerving 1-0-1 (31 assists), Beck 1-0-0, Haak 1-0-0, T. Schlossser 0-0-1, Holzer 0-0-1, J. Schlosser 0-0-0 (13 digs)

DT: Schieno10-0-0 (10 digs), Grinsteinner 2-0-0, Steffan 1-2-0, Dockter 0-0-0 (14 assists), Keator 0-0-3, Kovash 0-0-2, Stockert 1-0-0, Weir 6-1-0, Soehren 0-1-0.

DeVillers writes for the Grand Forks Herald