Last weekend the Central Lakes College Raiders went up against the North Dakota State College of Science and were humbled with a loss in four games.
It was pay back time on Wednesday night as the Raiders mounted a strong attack at the net, and showed a solid service game in coming back from an 0-2 deficit to send NDSCS home with a loss in a non-conference match.
Lindsay Monson and Alanna Hansen led the attack with 15 and 11 kills, and Tiffany Hartung was the leading setter with 16 set assists.
The Raiders ended a three game losing streak and moved their overall record to 2-3.
They were also solid on the defensive side with Sarah Miller leading the way with 17 digs. Haley Hornick also finished in double figures in digs with 10; and 11 of the 12 CLC players got into the dig column.
Monson was the leader in blocks with three and was followed by Tatum Hall with two.
CLC fell behind two games to none as they lost by scores of 25-21, and 25-19. A four point run in game one gave NDSCS a 12-9 lead that they never gave up.
In game two, CLC held a 9-7 lead, but then allowed NDSCS a couple three point runs and a four point run that put the Raiders away.
It was the little things that hurt the Raiders in the first two games.
“We made a few too many mistakes in the first two games,” said head coach Jane Peterson. “It wasn’t that like they were beating us that bad and if we could just get rid of a few mistakes that is a team that we could beat, and I think we believed that.”
With nothing to lose, the Raiders came out strong in game three and opened up a 10-5 lead. Then late in the match, they went on another run of five to open up a lead of 22-18. After holding off a late charge, CLC took Game Three by a 25-23 score.
“We lacked confidence in the first couple of games, but then we started making adjustments to hit more and we fed off each others adrenaline,” said Alanna Hansen. “We practiced so hard on things that they abused us on, and we came with so much energy tonight and the drive to want to beat them on our home court.”
Along with having much stronger play at the net in the hitting game, the Raiders were also able to make a defensive adjustment that paid off in a big way.
“The way they beat us last weekend was continually they would hit it down the right side and our left front blockers couldn’t touch it,” Peterson pointed out. “Tonight they couldn’t just put it down without us touching it and we knew what to expect.”
Game four was more of the same at the beginning as the Raiders jumped out to an early 8-4 lead. NDSCS clawed their way back and the teams traded points. With the score 18-17, CLC scored two points on a block and a kill to go ahead 20-17. After giving two points back, CLC went on a five point run and finished off game four with a kill by Hansen to even things up at two games.
The Raiders then finished off the comeback with a dominant 15-6 win game five as they didn’t allow any runs of more than one point by NDSCS.
Peterson likes to front load the schedule and the Raiders have faced tough competition in their first five games. Wednesday nights game could serve as a building block to bigger and better things.
“Coach says that it is how you start, and if we can start with a win against a quality opponent there is no better way,” Hansen said.
“We haven’t had big time volleyball like that in our gym for awhile,” Peterson said. “There was big blocking, big hitting and big defensive play. There was strong, powerful volleyball on both sides and it was fun.
“All of them played tonight and they have enough experience to know what to do. They have enough experience that when something goes wrong you can see them look at each other and say that we are going to fix that. This team is just beginning to trust each other and winning a game like this will help.”
NDSCS 25 25 23 19 6
Central Lakes 21 19 25 25 15
Central Lakes statistics
Crysta Christensen 5 kills, 7 digs
Alanna Hansen 11 kills, 4 digs
Hayley Hornick 10 digs
Carlie Sweet 3 kills, 2 digs, 2 blocks
Alice Widmark 1 kill, 1 ace serve, 1 dig, 1 block
Tatum Hall 4 set assists, 1 ace serve,
Tiffany Hartung 16 set assists, 7 digs
Sami Knott 8 kills, 6 set assists, 3 digs
Amanda Larson 3 ace serves, 7 digs
Sarah Miller 2 ace serves, 17 digs
Lindsay Monson 15 kills, 4 digs, 3 blocks
Kelana Wurtinger 1 kill, 9 set assists, 2 ace serves, 2 digs
Overall: CLC 2-3. Next: Central Lakes vs. Minnesota West at St. Cloud 6 p.m. Friday, CLC at St. Cloud Technical 7:30 p.m. Friday.