An impressive four-year run for the Petersen twins of Dike-New Hartford ended with yet another state championship.
The Wolverines claimed their third Class 2A title in four years with a straight set sweep of Hinton – 25-14, 25-23, 25-16 -- to cap an unbeaten season that was one set shy of ultimate perfection. Dike-New Hartford finished 50-0 and lost only one set – to Class 5A finalist Dowling Catholic.
As she has done so many times during her career, Payton Petersen led with 20 kills and was voted captain of the all-tournament team for the third time. Twin sister Jaydn added nine kills and Maryn Bixby, an outstanding No. 3 option in the attack, totaled 13. Jaydn and Bixby also made the all-tournament team.
Hinton countered with its own rising star in sophomore Bailey Boeve, who logged 22 kills, many on sets from Karlyn Kovarna, who finished with 32 assists. But the Blackhawks couldn’t hold off the Wolverines’ three-headed attack and finished 32-2. Their only other loss was to 4A Bishop Heelan.
The Petersens are the daughters of Northern Iowa coach Bobbi Petersen, who starred at Dike before the consolidation. Jadyn will play for their mother next year. Payton is headed to Louisville. In their final moment on the court together, Payton slammed home a kill to finish the match and nail down the championship.
This was the 16th title for the Dike/Dike-New Hartford combination and the ninth for coach Diane Diane Harms. She trails only Western Christian’s Tammi Verbeek (14) and Wahlert Catholic’s Tom Keating (11) on that list.