Cougars defeat Huskies
The Cougars took the Mustangs to four sets in Shepherd on Sept. 22 but lost the match, 25-18, 14-25, 25-23, 25-23. Columbus won the second set and then lost the next two by just two points.
Shepherd was strong at the net, posting 37 kills to the Cougars’ 26 and nine blocks to the Cougars’ one. Junior Camryn Ault had 11 kills and a block for Columbus. Junior Kat Sindelar had 23 assists, sophomore Morgan Kirch had four aces, and junior McCamey Miller had 16 of the team’s 66 digs.
“We played really hard against Shepherd, a lot better than the time before,” Cougar head coach Becky Kurtz said. “We mixed up our rotation again, and the girls adjusted quickly. Kat Sindelar set all the way around and did an amazing job. All of our back row players were covering hitters and getting tips. We played as a team.”
The Rams made short work of the Cougars in a Sept. 24 match in Red Lodge, 25-5, 25-14, 25-19. The Rams dominated the net with 41 kills to nine, led by senior Natalie Hilderman with 12 kills. She also had 23 assists and four aces. For the Cougars, Kirch had three kills, Sindelar had two aces and Ault had 1 ½ blocks.
“I believe we were a little star struck in the first set,” Kurtz said. “Red Lodge has great hitters, and we weren’t sure how to defend them. During the second set, we were able to get our block up quicker and slow their hitters down. By the time the third set rolled around, we were ready to play, but unfortunately it was a little too late. It was a real test in our self confidence, and we will be ready to go when they come to Columbus.”
The Cougars defeated Absarokee on Sept. 27 at home, 23-25, 25-18, 26-24, 25-13. Columbus was tough at the net with 27 kills to the Huskies’ 20 and doubled them in aces, with 14 to the Huskies’ seven.
“The girls played as a team,” Kurtz said. “We started off a little rocky but pulled together to win the last three sets. We had some girls struggle in specific areas of the game, but they made up for it in other areas. I am very proud on how we came together as a team and put together an entire game.”
Columbus is now 1-7 in conference play. Next up is a match in Joliet against the J-Hawks on Tuesday, Oct. 4.
Shepherd def. Columbus 25-18, 14-25, 25-23, 25-23
Shepherd: Kills: 37 (Jaycee Murdock 11) Assists: 36 (Melissa Czarny 22) Aces: 10 (Czarny 3, Leah Aigner 3) Digs: 66 (Bailey Dougherty 25) Blocks: 9 (Aigner 4.5).
Columbus: Kills: 26 (Camryn Ault 11) Assists: 24 (Kat Sindelar 23) Aces: 10 (Morgan Kirch 4) Digs: 66 (McCamey Miller 16) Blocks: 1 (Ault)
Red Lodge def. Columbus 25-5, 25-14, 25-19
Columbus: Kills: 9 (Morgan Kirch 3) Assists: 6 (Kat Sindelar 5) Aces: 6 (Sindelar 2) Digs: 22 (Alexa Riveland 6) Blocks: 2 (Camryn Ault 1.5)
Red Lodge: Kills: 41 (Natalie Hilderman 12) Assists: 36 (Hilderman 23) Aces: 11 (Hilderman 4, Rebbecca Purcell 4) Digs: 57 (Sam Deho 14, Zoe Cortner 14) Blocks: 3 (Portia Cortner 1.5)
Columbus def. Absarokee 23-25, 25-18, 26-24, 25-13
Absarokee: Kills: 20 (Erin Campbell 7) Assists: 23 (Caitlin Young 13) Aces: 7 (Hana Kelley 3) Digs: 43 (Campbell 15) Blocks: 4 (Mallorey Sheppard 2)
Columbus: Kills: 27 (Morgan Kirch 7) Assists: 20 (Kat Sindelar 16) Aces: 14 (Uluwehi Brooks 4) Digs: 52 (Alexa Riveland 17) Blocks: 4 (four with 1)