Athlete of the Week: Eau Claire North Volleyball

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) For the fourth straight year, Eau Claire North will be playing in the sectional semifinals, and after suffering losses the previous three seasons, they are determined to push past and get a step closer to a state title berth.

Eau Claire North takes on Menomonie in regional volleyball

"This is just a little bit different with this being senior year for them", says Head Coach Kendra Pagel. "They know what is on the line and they have been putting in the time and the work to continue our progress and our path to hopefully state."

"As a senior, knowing now that any game could be our last, that is the biggest motivation for all of the seven seniors that are one our team this years", says senior Brenna Beyreis.

"What I have learned is that you really have to lay everything out on the court and whatever happens will happen", says senior Olivia Laube. "It would be awesome if we could finally win the semi-sectional and get to the sectional final round."

Kendra Pagel is in her first season as North head coach, but she is no stranger to big games. In 2013, she led Eau Claire Regis to a state championship. You would think that that past success would take some pressure off, but Pagel doesn't feel that way.

"I don't really like the pressure but to me it is something where a seed doesn't matter. Who you play on a given day is when you have to do your best and give your best shot. For me I am always nervous, whether I have been to a state championship or not, as a coach I am nervous all the time."

As for her players they are confident as they get set for Thursday's Sectional semifinal in New Richmond against Wausau West.

"I put everything I have out there on the court," says Olivia Laube. "I dive for every ball and make sure I am pushing my team because it is a big deal and as a senior....I want to end on a high note and go state."

"Oh I think we are stronger than ever, says Brenna Beyreis. "We are super excited for this Thursday and ready to dominate"