The Lady Tigers opened the postseason with a 3-0 win over McLaughlin in the Region 6A Volleyball Tournament at Mobridge-Pollock High School Gym on Tuesday.
The Lady Tigers defeated the Lady Mustangs 25-9, 25-17, 25-23.
Coach Rose Henderson said the Lady Tigers started well, but kind of got lulled into playing the tempo of the 2-25 Lady Mustangs.
“It was a good warmup after having a week off,” said Henderson. “It’s hard to play against that caliber of volleyball, but at the same time, we have to play up to our ability and not have lapses.”
The Lady Tigers dominated the first set, using runs of 4-0, 6-0 and 8-1 to pull away for the 25-9 win. The Lady Mustangs kept set two close until the Lady Tigers used a pair of 5-0 runs to pull away from an 8-8 set. In set three, the Lady Tigers jumped to an early lead, allowing Henderson to pull some players off the bench and get some postseason experience. McLaughlin rallied back and took a 22-21 lead before the Lady Tigers turned things around to finish the set and take home the sweep.
“It was nice to have the opportunity in a region game to get some of the younger players some varsity experience.”
Middle hitters Hayley Borah and Megan Zahn led the Lady Tiger offense with six kills each. Molly Lahren had five kills and Jestice Talley had four. Lahren served four of the Lady Tigers’ 14 aces, followed by Kassidy Moser, Kaycee Redmond and Talley with three each. Talley and Moser led the defense with six and four digs, respectively.
D’Shai Weasel led the Lady Mustangs with six kills, Tehya White Mountain had five. Bradley Howard proved a tough serve with five aces.
“We had a hard time covering her serves,” said Henderson.
The five seed Cheyenne-Eagle Butte Braves come to the House on the Hill on Thursday to take on the Lady Tigers in the Sweet 16 qualifier.
The Braves upended four seed Stanley County 3-1 in Ft. Pierre on Tuesday. The Braves beat the Lady Buffaloes 12-25, 25-20, 25-22, 25-13.
Henderson said the Lady Tigers are going to have to step up their game if they are going to beat the Braves and move on to their second straight Sweet 16 appearance.
“Our timing was just a little off between the setters and hitters [last night],” said Henderson. “We have to have less missed serves and we need to attack more aggressively.”
This will be the 56th meeting between the Lady Tigers and Braves and the 18th postseason matchup. The Lady Tigers are 50-4-1 all-time in the series, including 17-1 in the postseason.
The Lady Tigers and Braves met once this season with the Lady Tigers winning a 25-15, 28-26, 25-17 match in Mobridge on Sept. 26.
McLaughlin (2-25) 9 17 23
Mobridge-Pollock (9-18) 25 25 25
McLaughlin: Serving 5 aces (Bradley Howard 5); Hitting 17 kills (D’Shai Weasel 6, Tehya White Mountain 5); Blocks 1 (Weasel).
Mobridge-Pollock: Serving 53-63, 14 aces (Molly Lahren 12-13-4, Kassidy Moser 12-13-3, Jestice Talley 9-11-3, Kaycee Redmond 6-8-3); Hitting 71-79, 25 kills (Hayley Borah 14-15-6, Megan Zahn 12-14-6, Lahren 14-14-5, Talley 13-16-4); Blocks 3 (Borah, Zahn, Jadin Monsen); Digs 14 (Talley 6, Moser 4).