The Lakeview Wildcats were playing in its first regional volleyball game in 23 years. The Grand Rapids South Christian Sailors were the Class B state runner-up in 2013 and are annual state champion contenders. On Tuesday night, the experience prevailed for the Sailors as they swept the Wildcats 25-15, 25-13, 25-9 to advance to the regional final Thursday against Lake Odessa Lakewood.
Mackenzie Oberlin was not feeling well about three years ago. The Lakeview senior was involved in a car accident that caused a couple of serious injuries. It was bad enough that Oberlin’s doctor told her she shouldn’t play sports again.
Lakeview’s volleyball team has a daunting task ahead of them. The Wildcats, who just won their first district title in 23 years, face the No. 10 team in the state in Class B according to the Michigan Interscholastic Volleyball Coaches Association, Grand Rapids South Christian.
Lakeview’s boys soccer team came close to being a .500 team this season. But the Wildcats finished 8-12.
The Class B district volleyball final took extra points three times and saw another Lakeview comeback. Down two games to one to Belding, the Wildcats came back and beat the Redskins 28-26, 28-30, 26-28, 25-11, 15-13 Thursday night.
Turnovers are hard to overcome. Seven turnovers are virtually insurmountable. On Friday, the Chippewa Hills Warriors used a dominant defensive performance and special teams to set up its offense in a 41- 0 shutout win over the Lakeview Wildcats in the opening round of the Michigan High School Athletic Association Division 5 playoffs.
Unlike last year, the Lakeview Wildcats are familiar with their first round playoff opponent (Maple City Glen Lake). The Wildcats (8-1) will travel to face former CSAA rival Chippewa Hills (7-2) tonight in the first round of the Division 6 football playoffs. The two teams spent the past nine years together in the same league. This year, the league was split into two divisions, with the Wildcats in the Silver and the Warriors in the Gold.
The Road to Ford Field begins on Friday/Saturday night for four area football teams. Pairings (games times to be decided later today) were announced on Sunday night with Lakeview (8-1), Central Montcalm (5-4), Carson City-Crystal (7-2) and Montabella (6-3) all getting the chance to play a 10th game this season.
Fighting for its playoff life, the stakes were certainly higher for Central Montcalm than they were for visiting Lakeview in Friday’s final football game of the regular season. The mistakes were just too much for Central Montcalm to overcome.
The Lakeview Wildcats have already clinched a playoff berth and were crowned CSAA-Silver champions. With one regular season game remaining they still have plenty to play for. Wildcats senior John Zuluaga-Torres is ready to help his team reach their goals.