Dutchgirl volleyball trio earns postseason nods

Will Johnson
Sports Editor

UNION — In spite of seeing their season in heartbreaking fashion in the MSHSAA Class 3, District 10 semifinals last Tuesday night against St. Clair, Jamie Ridenhour’s Owensville Dutchgirl volleyball team saw three of their players recognized by coaches from the Four Rivers Conference (FRC) and the district tournament.

Between the All-FRC and All-District lists, three of Ridenhour’s four Dutchgirl volleyball seniors received some type of recognition.

For her play as an outside hitter, Amber Nelms earned All-FRC and All-District First team selections.

Nelms was second on the team in kills with 167 behind fellow senior Breanna Diestelkamp. She posted a season-high 11 kills during a two-set loss to Pacific in late September.

Nelms served up 28 aces throughout her final season in a Dutchgirl volleyball uniform good for second place behind sophomore Emily McKinney’s 30 aces. In a two-set sweep of Bourbon on the road, Amber served up a season-high five aces against the Lady Warhawks.

Among the team leaders in kills and aces, Nelms was also second on the team in digs recording 320. Her season-high in digs came on senior night recording 20 in a tough three-set loss to St. Clair’s Lady Bulldogs.

Earning All-FRC honorable mention status, Diestelkamp improved on that during the MSHSAA Class 3, District 10 Volleyball Tournament held last week at Union High School.

Among a total of seven players, Diestelkamp garnered All-District first team honors among voting coaches from Salem, Sullivan, St. James, Union and St. Clair.

Like Nelms, Diestelkamp was a force to be reckoned with around the net as a middle blocker.

During her final season as a Dutchgirl volleyball player, Diestelkamp racked up a team-high 184 kills. Breanna’s season-high kill output came in the regular-season finale against Union with 14 of them in a three-set victory.

Leading the team in solo blocks (106) and block assists (46), Diestelkamp combined to amass 152 blocks. Diestelkamp’s season-high in blocks came during the Eldon Tournament with 10 total blocks against Boonville’s Lady Pirates.

Rounding out the trio of Dutchgirl volleyball honorees is senior Celeste Brandt.

Serving as Owensville’s libero, Brandt played her way on to the Class 3, District 10 All-District second team.

Averaging nearly six digs a set and over 13 a match, Brandt racked up a team-high 364 digs for the Dutchgirls playing 62 sets.

On three occasions, Celeste posted a season-high 23 digs twice in matches against Pacific and once against Sullivan.

Of Brandt’s nine aces during her senior season, four of them came against Belle.