Knights Chemistry Breaks 13 Year Drought

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Jacob Siciliano, Online Editor-In-Chief

Prospect setter Logan Hiskes placed the ball high above the net for waiting outside hitter Ryan Uemura. 

Prospect had found itself down 21-17 just a few minutes prior in the final set against Rolling Meadows in a match to decide the MSL east. After a few well-placed balls by Prospect and a few miscues from Meadows, Prospect had clawed back to take the lead 24-23 in the final set. 

Uemura hung in slow motion as he hit the ball. The ball split the middle of two outstretched meadows blockers and grazed off the finger of a Meadows setter before crossing the out-of-bounds line. Jean-Walker field house became eerily quiet as every player, coach and fan turned their attention to the officials.

The official signaled tipped ball off of Meadows and Prospect erupted in celebration as meadows stood in disbelief. Prospect had won the east 25-23 for the first time in 13 years.

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“We all kind of looked at each other, froze for a second then realized, wait we did it. It was honestly just crazy.” prospect setter Logan Hiskes said.

Prospect was never expected to be in this position at the beginning of the year. Prospect was seen as an average team without a setter, which head coach Mike Riedy refers to as the quarterback of volleyball.

“On paper nobody expected us to be as good as we are, and we have really surprised a lot of people this year,” Riedy said.

Rivals and players were taken by surprise as Prospect tore through the east only losing one in conference game during the season.

“At first glance, Prospect did not look like a very good team. But as we played I noticed that they had solid chemistry and were able to pull off great plays,” Hersey outside hitter Nate Meyer said.

The chemistry Meyer referred to is what propelled Prospect to an MSL east championship. Every player on the roster had a role and without them the team couldn’t function.

If I take any one of them off the court the team falls apart. They rely on each other, they support each other. It’s one of the most interesting teams I’ve ever coached”

— Mike Riedy

But even Riedy has no clue what started this chemistry.

“I don’t know where that [chemistry] came from. I’d like to claim that as coaching wizardry on my part, but it just happened,” Riedy said. “They’re not all friends, so it’s not that. It’s just this group of guys that happened to click.”

For Riedy, this team has a similar feeling to Prospect’s 2007 team that won the MSL. That 2007 team wasn’t expected to do anything within the conference at the beginning of the season but went on to win the east and rollover Barrington in the MSL championship.

“It’s freaky how many comparisons there are. So in 2007, we were a very similar team. Nobody really expected anything out of us then we started [stealing] a win from this team and that team, and then all of a sudden we won the east,” Riedy said.

Despite winning the east for the first time in 13 years, Prospect is solely focused on the road ahead.

“Winning the MSL east has been our goal since day one. We’ve done that now and we are not stopping here. We are going to do everything we can to take the  MSL crown and take that [momentum] into the postseason,” Hiskes said.

Prospect will take on Barrington in the MSL championship on Jun. 3, at 7, as they look to cap off their season with a Hollywood finish.

Catch the game here on KTV.