Ada-Borup sweeps Falcons
This is the difference between a defending section champion and a fourth-year varsity program: While Park Christian was tortured by the What Ifs of Tuesday's Game 1 defeat, Ada-Borup senior Emily Strand theorized -- with a straight face -- that d...
This is the difference between a defending section champion and a fourth-year varsity program: While Park Christian was tortured by the What Ifs of Tuesday's Game 1 defeat, Ada-Borup senior Emily Strand theorized -- with a straight face -- that dropping the opener would have benefited her squad.
"It'd be nice to see what could happen in losing the first game like that," the Cougars middle hitter said. "It'd be nice to see if we could do it. How much drive -- and if we could keep going."
The comments, of course, were only speculative. Ada-Borup won the game en route to sweeping the match.
Park Christian, meanwhile, had to deal with the reality of losing an opener that included 17 ties and 10 set points. The Falcons never recovered, dropping a 32-30, 25-14, 25-19 decision in Minnesota Class 1A, Section 6 volleyball.
"Every team wants to win the first game and every team needs to win the first game," Park Christian coach Raina Askin said. "Especially in this circumstance."
Initially, the Falcons (14-5-2) did well just to extend Game 1 beyond the 25 points necessary to win; they held off three consecutive game points to take a 25-24 lead. But they couldn't close out any of three game-point chances and the Cougars clinched on a Kari Strand kill.
From there, the Cougars (14-3) rolled. An 11-1 run was key in Game 2. A bevy of blocks after Park Christian had pulled within 12-11 turned the tide in the finale.
"We try to wear their blocking down by using a variety of our hitters," said Ada-Borup coach Ruth Hayden, whose team finished sixth at the 2003 Class 1A state tournament.
The stats reflected that philosophy. Emily Strand paced the Cougars with 16 kills and four blocks, while senior Amy Bennett and freshman Chelsea Ruebke had nine kills apiece and sophomore Kari Strand had eight.
In the most difficult regular-season home date in school history (so far -- Park Christian will host No. 5-ranked Underwood on Oct. 19), the Falcons were worn down after an exhausting first set.
"We'd be happy to have that experience more," Askin said of the first regular-season meeting with Ada-Borup; the Cougars beat the Falcons in the section semifinals last fall. "We're hoping that (the series) will continue."
"We came to this game thinking whoever won this game was going to be the favorite in the section," Emily Strand said. "And we knew we were going to win."
ADA-BORUP (kills-blocks-aces): E. Strand 16-4-0, Bennett 9-1-0, Ruebke 9-1-0, K. Strand 8-1-0, Brantner 4-1-0, Smart 1-1-1 (42 assists), Wagner 0-0-3, Gunderson 0-0-3.
PARK CHRISTIAN: Olsgaard 3-0-0 (24 assists), Vangsnes 6-0-0, Olson 8-5-1, Porter 4-1-0, Jordahl 4-1-1, Ystebo 5-2-0, Markey 0-0-1.
Readers can reach Forum reporter Terry Vandrovec at (701) 241-5548