HUDSON -- After taking first place at the season-opening Marshfield Quad Aug. 27 and going 4-2 at the 32-team Menomonie Sprawl the following weekend, the Hudson volleyball team continued its strong start with a 3-0 sweep over Chippewa Falls in its Big Rivers Conference opener Thursday, Sept. 5, in Chippewa Falls.

The Raiders took care of the Cardinals by scores of 25-13, 25-21, 25-17 to open conference play 1-0.

“It was a very nice performance by our girls, with very few times where we gave up runs of points, and when we did, we were able to score in bunches soon after to get the momentum back on our side of the net,” Raider coach Dennis Saathoff said.

Saathoff described the Raider’s attack as “super-balanced,” with Kaitlyn Zignego and Liz Collinson dishing out 12 and 10 assists, respectively. Collinson also led the team with three service aces.

Sara Hoffman led the offense with seven kills, followed by Jenna Hallen and Noelle Kiltie with four each and Shay Wassman, Abby Richardson, Abbie Matuke and Jade Sharretts with two apiece. Ariana Zins led the defense with 17 digs and made it through the match without a service reception error while Belle Blakey had three service receptions and Matuke registered a kill and a block.

“As a team we passed well both in service reception and defensive opportunities,” Saathoff said. “We were closing our blocks well and forcing their hitters to hit around to where our defense was positioned. From there we were able to efficiently transition into our offensive scheme and gradually build a lead as each set progressed.”

Hudson will continue BRC play at home this Thursday, Sept. 12, against three-time defending champions River Falls at 7 p.m. before hosting the eight-team Raider Invitational Saturday, Sept. 14. Baldwin-Woodville, Bloomer, Colfax, Menomonie, Prescott, Somerset and Superior will also be there with the first matches tipping off at 9 a.m.