TC volleyball opens at 0-4

The Tabor College volleyball team started its season 0-4 at the College of St. Mary Tournament in Omaha, Neb., over the weekend.

The teams the Bluejays faced?Hastings, Northwestern (Iowa), Dordt and Morning?side?were all among the top teams in the NAIA coaches preseason volleyball polls.

?This tournament was an amazing opportunity for our team to see how we compared to great teams, and to make a list of all the things we need to include or fix in our game to make us a great team,? coach Amy Ratzlaff said.

Hastings beat the Bluejays 25-20, 25-19, 15-25, 25-21 despite double-digit kill totals posted by three Tabor attackers: Ashley Cohlmia (13), Tina Frick (12) and Carly Kroeker (10).

?Ashley Cohlmia performed all the way around for us,? Ratzlaff said. ?She hit 2.23 kills/game but also led us in digs and serve receive. Ashley is a consistent force on the court.?

Against No. 5 Northwestern in the late game Friday, the Bluejays offense was less efficient. Tabor generating two fewer attacks per game and three fewer kills per game as a team. Cohlmia and Frick each posted seven kills, and Gina Hullet had six, but Northwest?ern claimed victory in three games (25-21, 25-20, 25-23).

?We were tied at 19 both the second and the third games,? Ratzlaff said. ?It was early season errors that cost us the game in both of those situations.?

No. 16 Dordt disrupted the Bluejays even more, posting a 25-13, 25-17, 25-13 win Saturday morning. Frick scored a team-high six kills on 21 attacks.

?Tina Frick had a great tournament,? Ratzlaff said. ?She led us in attacks with 2.69 per game and hit a .224 which is very good against these ranked teams. She also led us in blocks with 1.08 blocks per game. Tina?s game is becoming more and more solid and is adding a new dimension to our play with her back row attack and aggressive serve,? she added.

No. 9 Morningside beat the Bluejays 25-13, 25-22, 25-14. Tabor posted by far its highest attack totals of the tournament?more than 36 per game?but endured several extended scoring droughts. Frick again posted a team-high in the kills category, with 10.

?Mandi Phillips did a great job running our new offense,? Ratzlaff said. ?She had 8.31 assists/game which again is good against such strong offensive teams.?

?We went on an 11-4 run against Morningside,? she noted. ?All of those things actually gave our team confidence coming home.?

?It is never easy to lose, or to start the season 0-4, but I think if we were padding our schedule and undefeated at this point we would be heading the wrong direction,? she added. ?The team played a great tournament.?

The Bluejays begin conference play at 7 p.m. Wednesday at home against Sterling. The junior varsity plays at 5:30.

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