BY JEREMY SCHNEIDER | MIRROR SPORTS — If the goal of any athlete is to continue to improve, day in and day out, then Maumee senior Camy Wedge has had one of the most successful careers in Panthers history.
Already a standout athlete when she began her varsity volleyball career as a freshman, Wedge has continued to add new wrinkles and tools to her game over the last four years.
Standing only 5-foot-4, Wedge has turned into a viable weapon at the net, often going against players 8 inches taller.
One thing has remained consistent for Wedge, though, and that’s her ability to run an offense. In a road matchup with Northview last week, Wedge entered her name into the Maumee record book with her 2,000th career assist.
“I couldn’t have asked for a better five years of these players that just want to come in and make our program something to be proud of,” said Panthers coach Lindsay Vannett.
“Camy had to take on a big role, running a 5-1 (system) … she’s done it and she’s done it at a level that’s elite. It’s proven in all the accolades she’s received. She’s done the work – we ride the success.”
Wedge shared setting duties with Brynn Brown during her first two seasons, when she totaled 802 assists. With Brown’s graduation before last season, Wedge broke out with 700 assists. She has more than 500 assists this season.
Her development has been a product of her work ethic, Vannett said. Wedge is on pace to easily set career highs in kills and blocks this season. Just last week, in a 3-0 win over Southview, she had five blocks.
“She’s worked really hard to get where she’s at,” Vannett said. “In the later part of the season, she’s been working really hard on her blocking, which has been one aspect of her game we needed her to get better at. She’s putting the work in and improving.
“Her game has come full circle, especially in the last couple of weeks. She’s working her (butt) off. We run her probably a mile every time we play.”
Wedge committed to play volleyball next year at Spring Arbor University before this season started.
The win over the Cougars (25-19, 25-20, 25-15) was Maumee’s only victory in a three-match week. The Panthers lost both road games, at Archbold (25-28, 25-19, 25-16) and Northview (25-16, 25-17, 25-13). Northview is currently 12th in the state’s Division I poll and Archbold is 17-3.
Hannah Binkowski had a season-high eight kills against Archbold, while Avery Lewis and Kate Owens combined for 10 kills. Wedge had 13 assists and Bella Demers had 13 digs.
Owens dominated against Southview, going for 17 kills and six blocks. Demers had 13 digs, while Wedge had 25 assists, seven digs, five blocks and three aces.
“There are games we must win, and next week there are three of them,” Vannett said. “To be .500 going into the tournament, it gives you a different mindset.”
Last weekend, the Panthers (8-11 overall, 3-9 NLL) received the eighth seed in the upcoming Division II district tournament. They’ll open at home against No. 12 Bryan at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday. That winner will face the winner of No. 1 Liberty Benton and No. 13 Rogers on Thursday, October 20.
Before that, though, the Panthers close out the regular season with home games against Clay, Bowling Green and Napoleon.
“We’ve got a chance to be .500 at the end of next week,” Vannett said. “But they’ve got to want it. I can’t do it for them. They’ve got to want it and it’s got to be all 12. That’s where we’re struggling.”