October 10, 2013

Osky spikers record first LHC win of season

Herald sports editor


Oskaloosa has not had the best of season so far on the volleyball court.
But after winning two of five matches at last weekend's Urbandale Tournament, the Indians may be finding their stride.
They hosted new Little Hawkeye Conference member Dallas Center-Grimes Tuesday night and the match was a tight one from the opening set to the final set.
Oskaloosa won the first set 25-20 then lost the second 25-21 before winning the final two sets by scores of 25-23 and 25-22.
The Indians rushed the floor after improving to 4-21 on the season and 1-4 in conference play.
Oskaloosa coach Jennifer Comfort thought the team has been playing well this season despite its record.
"We've been practicing at this high level in practice and not executing," she said. "We finally took what we do in practice every single day and we did it on our home court and got the victory. They've been working that hard and that's how a win comes out."
The Fillies took control of the first set by scoring eight straight points to go from being down by four to up by 3 at 14-11.
Then Oskaloosa went on a scoring spree of its own to gain back momentum in the set. It scored six consecutive points to go ahead 17-14 as Dallas Center-Grimes had some hitting errors to aid the Indians run.
Oskaloosa would close out the set as the Fillies' Ellen Judd served the ball wide and Maria Settimi recorded a kill to end the set 25-20.
Dallas Center-Grimes got out to a 5-0 lead and appeared ready to get the easy win in the second set.
But the Indians came back to take a 12-10 lead to get back into the set. 
Dallas Center-Grimes regained control of the set by going on an 8-3 run to lead 18-15 advantage. Chelsea Ellers had two aces to spark the run.
The Fillies kept the Indians at bay the rest of the set before winning 25-21.
Neither team could get any kind of momentum in the third set, trading points for much of the set.
The set was tied at 12 before the Fillies were able to get a 3-point lead on kills by Ellers and Selena Nolte, and a service winner from Judd.
Trailing 21-15, things began to look bleak for Oskaloosa.
But it came roaring back as Kailey Scharff had a service winner and Taylor Richardson recorded a kill. The Fillies couldn't handle Scharff's serve and Kailyn Risher knocked down one of her 14 kills to get the Indians to within 21-19. Risher later added a block to tie it at 21 before another serve receive error by Dallas Center-Grimes put Oskaloosa on top by 1 at 22-21.
After the Fillies got to 24-23, Risher and Zoe Lynch combined a kill attempt by Nolte to put the Indians within one set of claiming their first home match win of the year.
It look like the match would go the full five sets as Dallas Center-Grimes held a 15-10 lead only to see Oskaloosa bounce back with eight straight points. Risher had a pair of kills and Jackie Reif had two kills to highlight the spurt for an 18-15 lead.
The Fillies managed to tie the set at 22, but they had two double-hit errors and another misplay allowed the Indians to storm the court as if they won a state title.
Comfort had plenty of praise for the support the fans gave to the team the entire match.
"If football has a 12th person, that's our seventh person," she said. "It definitely helped and that's why you love to play at home and win at home is to do it for that crowd. 
"The girls on the court made all the difference — the bench, everybody was into it. It was a victory for everybody tonight."
The Indians host their tournament on Saturday, beginning at 8 a.m. Teams expected to participate are Centerville, Fairfield, Gilbert, Grundy Center, Marshalltown, North Polk and Ottumwa.
Oskaloosa 25-21-25-25, Dallas Center-Grimes 20-25-23-22
Oskaloosa statistics
Serving — Kailey Scharff 27-for-30, 5 aces; Libby VanMersbergen 7-for-7; Taylor Richardson 15-for-17; Kailyn Risher 12-for-13; Paige Howard 10-for-13; Emily Allee 12-for-13. Totals 83-for-93, 5 aces.
Spiking — VanMersbergen 15-for-16, 7 kills; Richardso 14-for-14, 5 kills; Risher 25-for-28, 14 kills; Jackie Reif 8-for-8, 2 kills; Aubrey Miller 8-for-12, 2 kills; Zoe Lynch 14-for-18, 6 kills; Maria Settimi 5-for-10, 1 kill; Hunter Shaull 16-for-16, 4 kills. Totals 105-for-122, 41 kills.
Assists — Richardson 36, Lynch 3. Total 39.
Blocks — Risher 1, Lynch 1, Reif .5, Shaull .5. Total 3.
Digs — Richardson 19, Scharff 18, Howard 11, Allee 6, Reif 3, Risher 3, Lynch 3, Settimi 2, Shaull 2, Miller 2, VanMersbergen 1, Brooke Caves 15. Total 85.