By FRED KRONER
Senior Savannah Matthews and sophomore Josie Hess were selected to the 12-player all-tournament team on Saturday after helping the Bulldogs to a runner-up finish in their own 16-school volleyball invitational.
M-S (8-7) swept past four foes in straight sets to reach the championship match.
In the four wins, Matthews totaled 43 kills and Hess collected 43 digs to lead the way in victories over Oakwood (26-24, 25-16), Peotone (25-15, 25-20), Williamsville (25-21, 25-18) and Pleasant Plains (25-22, 25-20).
Kayin Garner had 73 assists in the four tourney wins. Ainsley Ranstead landed 23 kills.
In the finals, the Bulldogs fell to a Champaign Central team they had beaten to open the season, 25-22, 25-18.
On Thursday, M-S improved to 2-1 in Apollo Conference action with a come-from-behind 9-25, 25-18, 25-22 conquest of Mount Zion.
Garner had 17 assists and Ashley Wheeler added seven assists against the Braves.
Matthews had a double-double with 14 kills and 17 digs. Hess had 13 digs. Amber Yeakel had three blocks.
The team’s next match is at home on Tuesday against Taylorville.
M-S dropped to 1-2 for the season after a third successive game of yielding at least three touchdowns.
In a non-conference road game at Mascoutah, the Bulldogs came out on the short end of a 21-20 score last Friday.
Jordan Veldman scored his team-leading third touchdown for the Bulldogs. Cole Barnhart added a touchdown as well as a two-point conversion and Noah Crowley scored on the team’s longest play from scrimmage, a 74-yard pass from Dawson Finch.
Finch completed 8 of 14 passes for 163 yards. Crowley was the top receiver with his one reception. Veldman hauled in three passes for 46 yards and also rushed for a team-high 83 yards on 17 carries.
Dylan Gates carried 18 times for 54 yards and Clay Hubble also gained 54 yards on his seven attempts.
Defensively, Hunter Berg led the way with 10 tackles. Zach Travis had nine stops. Nathan McFall had seven tackles and also intercepted a pass.
The Bulldogs return to action at home on Friday against Taylorville at 7 p.m.
The Bulldogs (4-2-2) scored once in each half and captured a 2-1 Apollo Conference win at Charleston on Thursday.
Austin Carr’s first-half goal was assisted by Kadyn Jones.
In the second half, Eli Warren became the seventh squad member with a varsity goal this season, thanks to an assist from Joah Moore.
Warren’s first career goal proved to be the difference as the Trojans (4-2) added a late goal.
M-S returns to action Tuesday with a home match against Mattoon. The Bulldogs are 1-0-1 in Apollo action.
The girls’ squad placed fourth in the Class 2A division of the First to Finish Invitational at Peoria’s Detweiller Park.
Freshman Elizabeth Sims led the way for M-S with a 14th-place performance. Her 3-mile time was 18 minutes, 32 seconds.
Senior Brisa McGrath was the team’s next placer, finishing in 27th in 18:56.
Other teammates in the varsity race were Olivia Bunting (53rd in 19:38), Delaney King (58th in 19:45), Madi Balbach (73rd in 20:06), Klein Powell (74th in 20:06) and Emily Bednar (83rd in 20:11).
Belvidere North, Vernon Hills and Normal University High ended ahead of M-S in the team chase.
The M-S boys’ team did not compete on Saturday as the Lanphier Invitational was canceled due to the rains.
Alek Strube carded a 44 to take team medalist honors for the Bulldogs for the fourth time this season.
Jackson Glenn and Sawyer Daebelliehn each fired 47s in a Thursday meet at Charleston Country Club.
Other Bulldog scorers were Brandon Collins (49), Rick Bohlen (56) and Grant Harvey (60).
M-S’ team score was 187.
On Friday, M-S placed 30th in the 32-team Mattoon Invitational.
The Bulldogs had no individuals among the top 10 placers.