NRHEG falls in 5-set thriller

Published 10:59 pm Monday, October 2, 2017

The NRHEG volleyball team played one of its most competitive matches of the season against Janesville-Waldorf-Pemberton Monday night.

Despite going up three sets to one, the Panthers would end up losing the matchup to the Bulldogs, 3-2.

NRHEG junior Hannah Budach sets up her teammate senior Betsy Schoenrock for the kill Monday night. – Tyler Julson/Albert Lea Tribune

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Midway through the first set, it seemed like this was going to be an easy night of work for the Bulldogs as they were leading the set, 20-13. The Panthers, however, wouldn’t be taken down easily. Although they still lost the set, they rallied back to finish the set just two points behind the Bulldogs, 25-23.

The second set was another barn burner — the two teams would trade the lead all the way up to the very end of the set, when NRHEG would pull away and win the second, 25-20.

NRHEG junior Olivia Christopherson has her hit blocked Monday night against JWP. Christopherson would be a big assett to the team in all five sets. – Tyler Julson/Albert Lea Tribune

With the match tied at one set apiece, the Panthers rolled through the third set. They dominated in every facet of the game, putting the ball in challenging spots that resulted in many points being scored for the Panthers. They would go on to win the set 25-8, the biggest margin of the night by far.

The fourth set seemed like it was going to turn out much the same as the third when NRHEG jumped out to an early 13-8 lead. However, JWP battled back into the set and tied things back up at 16. The Panthers would have a great chance to end the match when they went up 24-20, but the Bulldogs came back once again winning the set, 27-25.

The fifth and final set was the Bulldogs’ from the start. Although the Panthers would keep it close throughout, they would ultimately fall to the Bulldogs, 15-11.

NRHEG senior Kelly Harden and junior Laura Worrell make their attempt at a block against JWP monday night. – Tyler Julson/Albert Lea Tribune

NRHEG came out to play Monday and they showed tremendous heart throughout the entire game. There were no weak spots in the Panther lineup; the game was just a few missed shots from going the other way.

Great back row play from senior Gabby Muri and strong work in the front row from juniors Olivia Christopherson and Alexis Anderson provided big sparks for the Panthers.

NRHEG will play again on Thursday when they travel to Wells to take on United South Central.

About Tyler Julson

Tyler Julson covers sports for the Albert Lea Tribune.

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