The Lady Tigers accomplished two things in Eureka on Tuesday. They won their first match of the year and they avenged a loss to the Patriots last season.
The Lady Tigers jumped out to a 7-1 lead in the first set and controlled most of the night to beat the Patriots 25-10, 26-24, 25-13 for their first win of the season after opening with two losses.
The win settled the score with Eureka/Bowdle after the Patriots won a 3-2 match in Mobridge last year. The Lady Tigers were 15-0 against the Patriots before that loss.
“Good confidence booster for the team,” said coach Rose Henderson. “We had a letdown in the second set, but the first and third sets the girls did well with keeping the momentum on our side of the net.”
Megan Zahn, Jadin Monsen and Emily Wientjes had kills and Hayley Borah served an ace to get the Lady Tigers off to a 7-1 lead in the first set. Leading 16-7, the Lady Tigers put the set away with a 5-0 run that featured two kills by Zahn and one by Regan Stoick.
The Lady Tigers led 9-3 in the second set before Eureka/Bowdle grabbed the momentum and crawled back into the game. The Patriots went on a 9-3 run of their own to tie the set at 12-12. The set went back and forth the rest of the way until tied at 24-24, when Zahn had a kill, followed by the Patriots hitting an attack into the net to end the set and give the Lady Tigers a 2-0 lead.
Set three was tied at 4-4 when the Lady Tigers took over with a 9-0 run that featured two Landyn Henderson kills and a block, along with two Monsen kills and two Stoick aces. Leading 14-9, the Lady Tigers scored five straight points to take a 19-9 lead. Leading 24-12, Zahn hit a shot that Eureka/Bowdle batted around but could not get back over the net.
Middle hitters Zahn and Henderson led the Lady Tigers on the night. Zahn had 13 kills and two blocks and Henderson had seven kills and one block.
“Megan and Landyn attacked the ball well last night to continue being aggressive at the net so that opens up our outside attack as well,” said Henderson.
Borah and Stoick finished with three aces each. Caitlyn Claymore spread the ball around with 24 assists. Emily Wientjes led in back with five digs.
Megan Weber led the Patriots with seven kills. Sam Frickson had a match-leading 12 digs, while Kodi Retzer passed for 11 assists.
The Lady Tigers will get their share of games in this week as they play Leola/Frederick in Leola on Thursday, host the annual Mobridge-Pollock Invitational on Saturday and then Groton Area comes to town on Tuesday.
“This win will definitely help with our next match against Leola/Frederick and the upcoming home tournament,” said Henderson. “The girls were really excited to have this one under their belt and they are hungry for more.”
The Mobridge-Pollock Invitational volleyball tournament starts at 10 a.m. at Mobridge-Pollock High School Gym on Saturday. Cheyenne-Eagle Butte, Eureka/Bowdle, McIntosh, Timber Lake, Edmunds Central, Faith and Leola/Frederick will be competing against the Lady Tigers for the title. First-round matchups had not been seeded before publication time.
The Lady Tigers and Leola/Frederick (2-6) will be playing for the 21st time when the two teams meet in Leola on Thursday. The Lady Tigers are 15-5 all-time against the Titans, but the Titans won a 3-0 match last season.
The Lady Tigers and Groton Area (7-1) are playing for the 35th time on Tuesday. The Lady Tigers are 23-11 all-time in the series but had dropped the last two including a 3-0 match in Groton last year.
Mobridge-Pollock (1-2) 25 26 25
Eureka/Bowdle (1-4) 10 24 13
Mobridge-Pollock: Serving 64-70, 8 aces (Hayley Borah 18-18-3, Regan Stoick 13-13-3); Setting 74-76, 25 assists (Caitlyn Claymore 70-72-24); Hitting 57-73, 29 kills (Megan Zahn 19-25-13, Landyn Henderson 9-12-7); Blocks 3 (Zahn 2, Henderson); Digs 13 (Emily Wientjes 5, Claymore 3).
Eureka/Bowdle: Serving 48-54, 3 aces (Kodi Retzer 12-12-2, Krystal Geier 9-11-1); Setting (K. Retzer 27-29, 11 assists); Hitting 66-82, 12 kills (Megan Weber 32-38-7, Geier 9-10-3); Blocks 7 (Weber 2.5, Geier 2.5); Digs 29 (Sam Frickson 12, Grace Walz 8).
JV Match: Mobridge-Pollock 22-25, 25-14, 15-8. C Match: Mobridge-Pollock 25-8, 25-7.