The Husky volleyball team hosted Dakota Valley Thursday, Sept. and came up short – 25-22, 17-25, 12-25, 11-25.
EPJ put together its most complete game of the season in the first game. DV started out strong and pulled away to a 14-10 lead. The Husky serve receive was struggling and DV’s middles were having a field day. EPJ head coach Erin Ellinger called a time-out and that turned things around for the Huskies. EPJ got a side out; 3 straight kills – Danica Torrez down the line, a tip from Natalie Heuertz and Josie Curry out of the middle, tied the score. The Husky front line started to control the net and even when they didn’t get a stuff block, they slowed it enough to give the defense time for a pass. Ashley Brewer ended up with 15 blocks on the night, and she and Heuertz (13 blocks total) teamed up for a couple in this game. With EPJ leading 20-19, DV’s Jorja VanDenHul went up in the middle looking for 1 of her 13 kills, but Hannah Nearman took the ball off her chest, Giorgio dived to pull it out of the net and Torrez put it down for 1 of her 8 kills. DV had to call a time-out trailing 21-23 and they did get a kill, but Curry returned the favor with a powerful hit to give EPJ game point. Bentlee Kollbaum laid out to dig a DV hit and Giorgio got the set to Curry. She tipped the ball perfectly into the middle of the DV defense.
DV head coach Mary Miller had a talk with her team between games; they came out with way more pressure on offense to start game 2. Their serving picked up and kept EPJ off-balance. Ellinger called a time-out trailing 8-12 after 2 DV aces. EPJ tried to control the game at the net – Brewer had a beautiful stuff block and Heuertz and Kollbaum got kills by swiping the ball off the side of the DV block. On consecutive points, Brewer and Heuertz blocked a hit on the right side, then Brewer and Kollbaum did the same on the left. But, DV kept building its lead and game 2 ended the opposite of game 1, with the DV setter tipping the ball into the middle of the EPJ defense.
See full story in this week’s Leader-Courier.