The Minot High School volleyball team huddled on its sideline Tuesday moments after a tough third-game loss that gave Mandan a 2-1 lead and put the Majettes on the brink of another West Region loss.
Before the players had time to feel defeated, Neil Diamond blasted over the sound system. Instead of talking about the errors and missed opportunities that cost them a chance to take the lead, sophomore outside hitter Brooke Suko and her teammates simply sang.
They sang as loud as they could when the "Sweet Caroline" began to play. Despite losing the game- as the tune goes - good times never seemed so good. They sang so loudly that eventually Mandan joined from the opposite bench.
"That song came on and it was like 'Oh, hey, we all know this song. Let's get pumped up,' " Suko said.
Minot rallied to win the fourth game before falling in the fifth. Before the final game began, the Majettes danced to the Village People's "Y.M.C.A."
It should come as no surprise that the music took over. The Majettes listen to it all the time.
"We listen to a lot of music in the locker room, before practices, before games. That's kind of just our go-to thing," senior middle hitter Morgan Milbrath said. "We listen to some classical music, we listen to hip hop, pop, techno, all of it."
Minot pass rush shows up against Central
Junior quarterback Alex Yanosko ran for two touchdowns and passed for another score and the Minot High School secondary picked off four Jake Mussman passes in a 38-7 win at Grand Forks Central on Friday. The unsung defensive line made things miserable for both Mussman and the Central passing game.
"Good defense is all 11 guys working together," MHS coach Barry Holmen said. "We really felt good about what our front guys were doing in terms of creating some piles and protecting our linebackers."
The defensive line is an all-senior unit that consists of Tanner Gust, Aaron Livingston, Demetreus Roby and Bryan Doerr.
Gust, who got his first sack of the season against Central, said his goal is simple.
"Just get in (the quarterback's) face," he said. "Cause as big a distraction as you can. Make him make a bad decision. If we can't get to him, hopefully we can disrupt something or whatever and let our secondary make a play."
Confidence building for MHS tennis
MHS knows that Bismarck Century will likely be an obstacle in the West Region tennis tournament, but Tuesday's regular season victory was a big step for the program.
The Magicians beat the Patriots for the first time since 2008 and did so with dominant performances in doubles. Notched at three wins apiece following singles play, MHS took all three doubles matches.
An extra singles win for either team in the next meeting could be the deciding factor.
The three MHS losses were well contested, none more than senior Landon Klein's at No. 2. Klein had two-game leads in both sets, but was overtaken by Century junior Sam Mastel.
One of the most frustrating points for Klein came in the second set when Mastel denied two spikes in a row and Klein hit the third attempt long.
"That was a doozy," Klein said. "I was just trying to aim it down, but again, he was a wall in that point and got the best of me. Couldn't do much about that. He's a great player."
Mastel expects the matchup to be as intense if the pair meets again later in the season.
"He's consistent at the baseline and he has some really good drop shots," Mastel said.
Sports editor Tim Chapman contributed to this report.