ROCHESTER — With 62 kills, the No. 5 seeded Central Lakes College Raiders pressed the issue and knocked out No. 9 Jefferson 3-1 in the consolation bracket of the NJCAA Division III National Tournament Friday, Nov. 15.
Sydney Berg posted 22 kills to go with three blocks. Maggi Fellerman landed eight kills and six blocks and Lexi Vos recorded nine kills for CLC.
“Maggie and Syd had really good games and Lexi, the other outside hitter, she was fine out there,” Raiders head coach Jane Peterson said. “Really Hailey Tihlarik had a good game, too. She was super consistent. The ball was going to her and it was just a sigh of relief as we knew it would be fine.”
Tihlarik finished with 27 digs and three ace serves. Kylie Porter recorded 46 set assists to go with five kills and 13 digs.
Haley Schleper finished with 11 kills and 12 digs.
“It was much better offense, partly because the blockers weren’t as consistently strong,” Peterson said. “The first two sets we were hitting the holes every time and we were very much in control. Then the other team just started fighting and playing really good defense. We did have quite a few blocks and they stated to pick those up instead of letting them into play.
“I’m not sure what happened in the third set, but we started to make quite a few mistakes in a row. They had a run of a considerable number of points in a row.”
CLC blasted out to a 2-0 lead with 25-18 and 25-11 wins. Jefferson rebounded with a 25-21 win in the third set before CLC finished the match with a 25-19 win in the fourth set.
The Raiders will play for fifth place Saturday, Nov. 16, against No. 7 seeded Harper, which upset No. 6 seeded Jamestown 3-1.
“That is something to be proud of,” Peterson said. “We’re going to play Harper, which is a really good team. We did beat them earlier in the year, but they are a much better team than they were then. As are we. I’m hoping it will be a competitive match. It should be.”