The Bulldogs have not been to the state volleyball tournament since 2015, and they will not be attending this year. Bettendorf travelled to Dowling Catholic High School in Des Moines to take on the Maroons in the 5-A state regional final. Dowling came out of the gates hitting hard and defending well, and defeated the Bulldogs in four sets.
Each set was close, with the teams neck and neck throughout the first ten or so points, but in three of those matches, the Maroons pushed ahead of the Bulldogs with their multitude of hitting options on the outside and in the middle.
The standouts for the game include junior Ally Grothusen who had nine kills on 22 attempts along with four other Bulldogs who eclipsed at least five kills on the night.
Senior Abbey Fromi led Bettendorf in assists against Dowling with 20, and Grace Erpelding following behind her with 14. Grothusen, with Emma Ostrom and Lita Solbrig, all picked up at least three total blocks individually.
The Bulldogs’ season came to an end just shy of the state tournament at the U.S. Cellular Center in Cedar Rapids, and this is the second year in a row the Bulldogs have missed out on the tournament in the regional final game.
However, the team was quite successful throughout the season. The Bulldogs’ longest win streak was a span of 13 games and the team earned a share of the MAC title for yet another season, further showing the consistent excellence in the Bettendorf volleyball program.
The team parts ways with a strong senior class who played a truly vital role on the team this season and the 2016 season. Ostrom and Baer, the attacking duo for the Bulldogs, paced the team offensively, and Fromi and Erpelding controlled the attack by assisting point after point.
The program returns Grothusen, one of the most talented players from this season. A D1 commit to the University of South Dakota, she was one of the best players on the front line for Bettendorf this fall and will look to lead the Bulldogs to the U.S. Cellular Center in the 2018 campaign.