Natalie Gaszynski

Natalie Gaszynski was one of three Central players to have 15 kills

PELLA — The Central College volleyball team rallied to win the final two sets against the University of Dubuque for an American Rivers Conference victory Saturday.

Central (11-8, 2-2 conference) secured the win 22-25, 26-24, 22-25, 25-18, 15-12 over the Spartans (7-13, 1-4 conference).

“I’m really proud of how we adjusted as the match went on,” coach Jeanne Czipri said. “This team kept fighting as the match went on. Even when Dubuque was going on great runs, we didn’t let them run over us.”

It was another standout performance for Krissa Larson (senior, outside hitter, Waverly, Waverly-Shell Rock HS) as she notched 22 kills on 41 attempts.

“She’s evolved as a player in four years,” Czipri said. “She’s hitting different shots and she’s taking the right swings and she’s starting to demand the ball. This is what happens when a senior takes over a match.”

Gracie Pierson (freshman, outside hitter, Lake City, Minn.) and Natalie Gaszynski (junior, outside hitter, Huntley, Ill.) also had 18 and 15 kills, respectively. Pierson had a double-double with 12 digs.

“We played some good, selfless volleyball today,” Czipri said. “We don’t get three players with 15 kills without other players pulling the block away and our setters making good decisions.

“Gracie and Natalie did fantastic with decision-making and being aggressive and staying aggressive, even after big blocks against them.”

Amanda Smith (junior, setter, Tipton) had 30 assists and Adisyn Illg (junior, setter, Johnsburg, Il.) had 24. Lauren Brown (sophomore, Underwood), Emma Wagler (freshman, Des Moines, Roosevelt HS) and Pierson each had four block assists. Landry Luhring had a team-high 19 digs.

Central travels to Luther College next Friday for its next match.

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