The Lions dropped a 3-1 match with Humboldt Tuesday, but responded to the loss with renewed spirit and went 4-2 at Saturday’s Algona Tournament.
Humboldt 2, CL 1
The Lions edged the Wildcats 25-23 in game one, but fell off their usual aggressive game and dropped the next three by scores of 25-13, 25-22, 25-18. The loss put the Lions at 5-3 in North Central Conference play. The team was slated to play their final home match of the regular season Tuesday, Oct. 16, against Webster City.
“The senior group that is leading this team has been playing well overall and also playing with a lot of confidence,” said Coach Scott Swenson, who predicted his team will bounce back against the Lynx.
Against Humboldt, Kaitlyn Pitzen had a big night, going 15/17 at the service line with two aces. She also recorded 10 kills, nine digs and two blocks. Jenna Peterson had eight kills and was 10/12 with two aces serving. She also made nine digs and had two blocks. Bailey Kibsgaard had five kills for the Lions and Brianna Haugen had three kills to go with her 8/8 serving, eight digs and one block.
Setting up the Lion offense was Carly Ouverson, with 28 assists. Ouverson was also 9/10 serving with eight digs. Megan Kopriva also played solid defense for the Lions with 10 digs. At the service line, she was 12/13.
Taylor Julsen and Emily Willms also contributed throughout the night with their front and back row play, added Coach Swenson.
“The first set we came out playing very well and taking advantage of Humboldt’s mistakes. The last three sets we lost control of the tempo of the match and couldn’t seem to settle down and play our aggressive style. We did a very nice job at the net being physical and keeping pressure on Humboldt with our serving game, but we made too many mistakes with our passing and hitting balls into the net.”
The Lions went 4-2 in matches and 8-5 in set play at the Algona Tournament Saturday. The effort puts the team at 17-13 overall in matches and 44-33 in overall set play.
“It was a outstanding total team effort today for the seniors in their last Saturday tournament together,” said Coach Swenson. “The girls gave everything they had for each other. They never gave up and continued to show their will to win. I am extremely proud of the seven seniors and the one junior. Those seniors have paid their dues for each other and themselves. “
The Lions shut out three of their four opponents in the tournament. They defeated Algona, West Hancock and Spencer by 2-0 scores and beat Forest City, 2-1. Their only losses on the day came at the hands of Sheldon and Carroll, both by 2-0 scores.
Statistical leaders for the Lions included: Carly Ouverson, 85 assists, four kills, 12 digs and 35/40 serving with six aces; Jenna Peterson, 22 kills, 17 digs and 51/51 with five aces; Kaitlyn Pitzen, 30 kills, 17 digs, six solo blocks and 34/37 serving with two aces; Bailey Kibsgaard, 22 kills and nine digs; Taylor Julson, seven kills, 10 digs, five solo blocks and 23/30 serving with six aces; Brianna Haugen, six kills, 15 digs, four solo blocks and 21/23 serving with two aces; Megan Kopriva, 22 digs, 19/22 serving with one ace; and Emily Willms, four digs.