TC roars back to beat Sterling



Given the explosive tension in the gymnasium, Tabor College?s conference-opening match against rival Sterling College could have been mistaken for the championship, as the Bluejays pulled out a 3-2 comeback victory Thursday.

?I?m so proud of the girls for battling,? said coach Amy Ratzlaff. ?You get down two games and that?s ridiculously hard to come back from.

?This place made the difference,? she added. ?The home crowd was unbelievable and everybody?s support just kept our girls going and going hard. They played their hearts out and got the ?W.??

The Bluejays came out flat the first two games, a luxury they could not afford against a tough Sterling team. Tabor lost, 17-25, 22-25.


The third game started the same, but Tabor found its stride and fought back to a 27-25 win.

?I think the girls dug deep at the end of that third game and pulled out a tight win and that was a game-changer,? Ratzlaff said. ?I just felt like if we could get that third game we?d be rolling.?

After Tabor held off Sterling 26-24 to win the fourth game, events took a turn for the worse as the Bluejays trailed early in the critical fifth game.

But Tabor found its spark late in the game, fueled by a stellar performance from Tina Frick, who had 31 kills on the night. The Jays won, 15-12.

?Tina had an unbelievable game,? Ratzlaff said. ?I mean, unbelievable. Unstoppable. I?m so proud of her. She has worked a long time in her career to be able to experience a home match like that when she?s just on fire.?

Ratzlaff said she could not be more proud of her seniors, who played hard and stepped up when it counted. They were not the only ones who played a big part, though.

?We do rely heavily on some very young players,? she said. ?Our setter (Hollister Wolf) is a sophomore and she ran the court.?

Ratzlaff also gave props to junior Jessica Wollenberg.

?She was a threat wherever she went,? Ratzlaff said. ?And I think her serving out the end of the (fifth) game was a big deal.

?It took a tremendous amount of mental toughness and that was probably the most significant part of the end of that match. She served with confidence.?

Coming?The Bluejays hope the hard-fought win will be a springboard for their home match with conference opponent McPherson College tonight (Sept. 21).

?To see us come back and win a fifth game from behind is significant,? Ratzlaff said. ?In a coach?s eyes, that makes you just love your team.

?I love my girls for giving that kind of effort. It was a good night.?

The victory puts Tabor at 6-5 for the season.

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