ORIGINALLY WRITTEN DON RATZLAFF
The Hillsboro volleyball team ended its stay at the Canton-Galva Invitational Saturday on a bright note with a 15-12, 15-8 win over Chase County.
Unfortunately, it was the only win the Trojans (4-15) could manage in pool play and finished the day with a 1-2 record.
Hillsboro played its best volleyball against the best team in the tournament. The Trojans opened play against a talented Moundridge squad. Hillsboro lost the match, 8-15, 11-15, but played toe-to-toe with the eventual tournament champions.
In the second game of the match, the Trojans rallied from a 5-10 deficit to score six straight points with Adrien Bebermeyer serving to lead 11-10. The two teams then exchanged side-outs twice before the Wildcats strung together the last five points to win.
In its second match of the morning, Hillsboro came out flat against Hesston and paid the price. The Trojans were spanked in the first game, 2-15, and were down 3-13 in the second game before showing some spark.
With Bebermeyer again serving, Hillsboro scored 10 straight points to tie the game. The two teams traded side-outs before Hesston managed the final two points for the two-game sweep.
When the Trojans again came out sluggish against Chase County, the Bulldogs built a 10-7 lead. Hillsboro scored the next six points using five different servers to lead 13-10. It took five more Trojan servers to register the final two points for the win.
In the second game, the Trojans got eight straight service points from Charity Davis to break open a back-and-forth battle and end the match.
Davis was named to the all-tournament team.
Ellinwood-The Trojans again played well against a quality MCAA team, but again had no wins to show for it in Tuesday’s game at Ellinwood.
Both matches against the Eagles went five games. Hillsboro took a 2-1 lead in the first match, before losing, 21-17, 13-21, 21-16, 15-21, 6-15.
In the second match, the Trojans battled back from an 0-2 deficit, but couldn’t win the fifth and deciding game. The scores were 9-21, 13-21, 18-21, 11-21, 8-15.
“It was a hard-fought battle,” coach Collette Burton said. “They played hard, but it was disappointing not to come out with a win.”
Elise Matz had 12 kills for the evening to pace the Hillsboro attack. She was successful on 45 of 59 attack hits. Charity Davis was 29-of-32 with seven kills.
Defensively, Davis led the team with 24 digs and Matz added 20. Katie Fast had 11 blocks.
“I continue to see an improvement every week,” Burton said. “Something we need to focus on is being aggressive throughout the match, because when we start being cautious we start making a lot of mistakes.”
Burton was pleased with her team’s improvement in serve receive. The Trojans were successful 97 times in 120 attempts (81 percent).
“We were getting the passes right up to our setter, and we were putting the ball away,” she said. “That part of our game has really come around.”
Coming-The Trojans were scheduled to play host to Halstead yesterday.
Sterling comes to town next Tuesday for a pair of matches. Varsity action begins around 6 p.m.