The Unstoppable Season

The Dowling Catholic Girls Volleyball team keeps their underdog mentality after taking down tough ranked teams this season

Dowling Catholic seniors joined together after the Southeast Polk game with their COVID-19 student section.

Julia Friedrich, Staff Writer

There’s no stopping Dowling Girls Volleyball! Last week, the Dowling Catholic girls  rallied on then #1 Valley. The girls defeated the Tigers in three quick sets! 


The team defeated the tigers through teamwork, confidence and staying mentally tough. Lauren Havlik (12) kept the team engaged for every point with her consistent blocks and kills.


Dowling Catholic seniors joined together after the Southeast Polk game with their COVID-19 student section.

“Our defense was great during practice. We worked hard on defending fast swings and also pressing hard trying to block those which greatly helped us during the Valley game,” said Havlik.


Going in, Dowling knew it would be a rough battle back and forth. With a outside hitter from Valley who’s committed to Nebraska, the girls needed to stay on their toes and be ready for every ball. 


“No matter who we beat or what we are ranked, we always say to have an “underdog” mentality. As the underdog, you have to fight harder, smarter and never give up any play without a fight. Personally, I knew Valley’s outside hitter, a Nebraska commit, would be swinging hard so I went into the game telling myself I wouldn’t let her get one kill on me,” said Libero Anna Flynn (12).


The game took a turn and Dowling kept their heads high. They ended the game winning, after just three sets! 


“Going into the game, I think we all wanted to win but were all shocked when the last game was only 25-7. We didn’t win, we owned the court. I think we were all surprised and very, very happy obviously. I knew we were going to win and I also thought it would be a long, tough fight. I think we were all ready for that and instead we all played with confidence and I was so proud of every single player,” said Emerson Thelen (12).


This week, Dowling will take on Southeast Polk to play them again. On Saturday, they will play Ankeny to try to dominate for the third time against them. 


“Our mindset for playing SEP this week is to keep working hard and to not take any team for granted. We want to continue to get better each practice and game. We’ll prepare by continuing to work hard on our defense and get lots of reps in for offense to have a good connection with our setters,” Havlik said. 


Already conquering the Ankeny Hawks twice, Dowling will go for three wins on Saturday. Third times a charm!


“We need to keep our intensity at practice high so we can get the most out of our reps. A general saying in volleyball is it’s hard to beat a team three times, and we’ve already won against Ankeny twice. As a team we really need to mentally prepare through positive self talk and visualization so our heads can be in the game Saturday,” Flynn said.


This team has prepared mentally and physically throughout the summer and is still continuing to do so. Dowling Catholic Volleyball is ready to take anyone down this year.