Lake Mills coach passes milestone

Published 9:06 am Monday, September 21, 2015

Coach Jim Boehmer passed a milestone in his 24th season, and the No. 8 (2A) Lake Mills volleyball team split matches against ranked teams.

The Bulldogs finished 4-1 Saturday at the Forest City Classic, and Boehmer picked up his 700th career win against Panorama and No. 701 against No. 6 (3A) Forest City.

“I have been lucky enough to coach a lot of great young ladies, who have put up with me for many years,” Boehmer said. “They have all been hard workers and have allowed me to be a part of their high school experience. For that I am thankful. It is tough getting old, but these kids help keep me young.”

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After a loss against No. 11 (3A) Spirit Lake to start the tournament, Lake Mills defeated Boone 2-1 and swept Spencer, Panorama and Forest City.

The Bulldogs swept Spirit Lake on Sept. 5 at the Algona Tournament but lost Saturday’s rematch 2-1 with game scores of 22-20, 21-23 and 15-3.

“To start the day with your first loss of the season was difficult,” Boehmer said. “It hurt the kids, and I was tough on them. I challenged them, and they responded with four straight wins.”

Lake Mills’ 25-12, 25-19 sweep of Forest City is the lone blemish on the Indians’ record. Forest City went 5-1 at the tournament and entered Saturday’s matches with a 10-0 record.

In the Bulldogs’ five tournament matches, Cede Byrnes accumulated 23 kills, 18 digs, 10 ace serves and five blocks to lead the team at the net. Lexi Groe matched Byrnes’ kill total and had five blocks. Madison Shifflett added 18 kills, three ace serves and a team-high 10 blocks.

Kelsea Heintzman racked up 88 assists, nine digs and nine serves.

Sophomore Dana Baumann had 14 digs, and Boehmer said she showed improvement.

“By the end of the day, she was doing the job we know she can do,” he said. “She dug some tough balls and began to fit our libero role very well.”

Next, Lake Mills (20-1 overall) will host North Union (8-11 overall) at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.