Opinion: Was Dexter-Skyline match just a prequel to District semis?

It all could be just a “set” up.

And if indeed Tuesday’s SEC crossover match between Dexter and Skyline ends up being a preview to Wednesday’s District volleyball semifinal at Huron then seat belts may have to be handed out because it’s going to be one wild ride.

But before we look ahead, let’s take a look back to Tuesday night in Dexter in one of the most intense, well-played and evenly matched volleyball games of the season. This was Goliath vs. Goliath between two teams that could go far in the postseason – if they can get by the other that is.

And no one on the floor, in the stands or coaching the two teams was surprised that it would take five sets to determine a winner. And a very exciting fifth set thrown in just for fun.

As hard-fought a match as it was, both teams certainly appeared to be having fun throughout the long evening. There was as many smiles and laughs from both sides as there were spikes, sets and volleys. Yes, you can play hard and have fun at the same time.

Volleyball is like that. It seems like it’s one of the few sports where players can laugh on the floor, even after they make a mistake. It’s a great way to put something behind you and just move on to the next play because letting something chew you up inside is only going to hurt you on the outside.

There was joy but no lack of intensity on Tuesday night. The stands were packed, the crowd was loud and into it and the two teams responded with putting on an impressive show. Was it a prequel?

The sequel is scheduled for next week, although another Ann Arbor team will look to shut down production before it even arrives on the big screen. And it all starts on Monday when Skyline faces Pioneer in the first round, the only first-round match of the Huron District. The winner advances to play Dexter while Huron faces Pinckney in the other semifinal game.

The finals are Friday night.

And while Dexter and Skyline are loaded, they both could be considered underdogs in this tournament. Huron, coached by the very successful Toney Cummer and led by Michigan-State bound Molly Johnson, might just be the favorite to advance to Regionals.

The River Rats have two things going for them. One, it’s their gym and there is certainly a home-field advantage to playing in the dome. The second one, and much more important, is they only have to beat Dexter OR Skyline while those two teams have to win two tough matches.

“Our nemeses is Huron, that team and that gym,” said Dexter Coach D’Ann Dunn. “We have to get over the mental part of playing in that facility.”

One might bring up that both Skyline and Dexter have defeated the River Rats this season so there is always that side of the net to consider.

And nothing is guaranteed here with Pioneer and Pinckney also in the mix.

Should be a fun, wild ride. Buckle up everybody.

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