Playing at home in her debut on the bench, Shoemaker was pleasantly surprised by the Chippewas performance in a five-set marathon against Ravenna.
Falling behind with losses in the first two sets, 16-25, 22-5, the Chippewas regrouped and came charging back to win the next two, 26-24, 25-22. They fell short in the fifth set, 12-15.
No individual statistics were available for Manistee because of a technical issue.
“Ravenna is a tough school,” said Shoemaker. “They have a lot of girls who have been playing a long time. They’re strong and they’re tall.
“But even after losing the first two sets, our girls did not give up. I was proud of the way they came back. They showed a lot of grit and determination.”
Shoemaker added that the girls told her that it was the best season opener they’ve had in recent years, and many of the fans echoed those sentiments after the match.
Manistee plays at home again Tuesday in a tri-match against Benzie Central and Suttons Bay while Ravenna will be back in action on Wednesday, August 31 against Kent City at Covenant Christian High School in Grand Rapids.