PREP VOLLEYBALL: Arrows outlast Raiders
FULDA -- If it were possible to tie a volleyball match, Monday's contest between Fulda and Pipestone Area would have made a deserving stalemate. However, it was inevitable that by the end of the night one team would end up feeling the crushing bl...
FULDA -- If it were possible to tie a volleyball match, Monday's contest between Fulda and Pipestone Area would have made a deserving stalemate.
However, it was inevitable that by the end of the night one team would end up feeling the crushing blow of a narrow defeat.
In the Arrows' last match against Luverne they were that team, losing in five sets after taking a 2-0 advantage, but on Monday, Emily Darveaux made sure her team didn't fall short again.
With the score tied 14-14 in the deciding fifth game of the match, Darveaux put away the last two points to lift the Arrows to a much needed victory.
Game scores were 25-23, 27-25, 18-25, 13-25 and 16-14.
Courtney Hulstein led the Raiders' comeback efforts in the third and fourth games on the strength of a strong service game. She went 25-for-29 serving with 10 aces and 23 points, and also led the team with 19 assists and contributed 11 digs.
Brittany Hulstein rounded out the Fulda attack with a team-high 13 kills and nine blocks.
Amanda Haupert was a solid presence in the PA lineup, going 13-for-15 from the service line with six aces and contributing 25 digs. Darveaux went 18-for-24 serving with 5 aces and nine kills and came up in the clutch when she was needed.
"I think the difference this time was Emily Darveaux stepped up, our senior, and brought the team together when we were down, and said, 'You know what guys, if we don't stick together we're not going to win, and it's going to take everyone on the team to try to come back to win.'" PA head coach Todd Texley said. "A credit to her for being a positive influence on the rest of the younger girls."
The first two games were close contests all the way with the lead changing hands constantly.
The Raiders took a quick 6-1 lead in the first game, and later held a 14-8 lead before the Arrows made a comeback to take nine of the next 10 points for a 17-15 advantage.
A strong service run from Jess Hermeling brought the Raiders back in the lead 22-17, but the Arrows went on to take eight of the next nine points to win the game.
The second game was back and forth all the way, with neither team taking more than a four point advantage the whole game.
The score was tied nine times through the course of the game, but two successive hitting errors by Fulda with the score tied 25-25 gave PA a two game advantage in the match.
The next two games were all about the Raiders.
"I think they just found their confidence and saw that they could hang in there with them, and if we pushed a little harder we could beat them," Fulda head coach Jen Tiesler said of her team's comeback. "In the end it just kind of fell their way instead of ours."
The Raiders won the third set by making an 18-9 run after falling behind 9-7, and won the third set on a 12-point service run from Courtney Hulstein.
"She's just an all-around solid player, you can always count on her to show up," Tiesler said of Hulstein.
In the final game, the Arrows made a crucial error by having Darveaux serve twice in a row, which brought the scores from 7-7 to an 8-5 advantage for the Raiders. However, Darveaux's two winners at the end made sure that the error didn't lead to a defeat for her team and thwarted the Raiders' efforts to pull off a comeback win.
The Raiders were deflated after the loss, but were happy to come so close to victory after falling behind early.
"We played really hard," Courtney Hulstein said. "I'm proud of my girls, I'm disappointed about the loss. I would have liked coming out with a win after all that hustle and stuff, but they're a pretty good team."
The Arrows felt a sense of relief after the game and hope the close win will help provide a spark for the rest of the season.
"It's a big win," Texley said. "They had a lot of confidence coming in, they thought this was going to be the first year they were going to beat us. We just kind of stole the first two games and took a little wind out of their sails, but give them credit for coming back and winning the next two. They're a tough team, we just got a few more breaks in that last game."
Texley attributes the team's lack of consistency for allowing them to continue blowing 2-0 leads in matches, something he hopes will build as his team becomes more experienced.
"We can do good things in short spurts, we just can't seem to put it together for a longer period of time," Texley said. "We're a young group, and that's part of it I suppose, we're hoping things will click as we get a little farther along in the season, but we're going to run out of time pretty soon."
PA is now 2-4 on the year and plays Marshall on Thursday.
Fulda is now 5-10 overall and will look to rebound in their matchup at Red Rock Central tonight.
Tiesling expects her team to quickly recover after Monday's crushing loss.
"I think they're disappointed, but I'm proud of them, I think they played well, I think they fought tough," Tiesler said. "I couldn't ask them to play much better. Tweak a few little things and we'll come on top next time."