Three NCAA Div. III national titles
STORM LAKE—Central College used a layered attack to roll past Buena Vista University in a 25-20, 25-19, 25-13 Iowa Conference volleyball decision Tuesday.
The Dutch hit .303 overall to Buena Vista’s .098 and finished the match in just 75 minutes. Central improved to 8-12 overall with a 2-3 league mark, while the Beavers dropped 4-18 overall and 0-5 in conference play.
“We had good balance from our hitters and we did a good job of mixing up the speed of our offense to keep Buena Vista off balance,” coach Kent Clayberg said.
Outside hitter Tess Reinig (senior, Manchester, West Delaware HS) led the attack with seven kills. Middle hitter Ashley Pedersen (senior, Humboldt) hit .357 with six kills in 14 attempts and right-side hitter Jessica Laflin (sophomore, Phoenix, Ariz., Horizon Honors HS) had five kills. Right-side hitter Liz Ihnen (junior, Sheldon) was an efficient force at the net again, hitting .500 with three terminations and no errors.
Setter Claire Stewart (sophomore, Colorado Springs, Colo., Classical Academy) tallied 13 assists and seven digs. Libero Tori Zempel (freshman, La Porte City, Union Community HS) had nine digs.
The Dutch offense sprang to life after the block settled in to the timing of Buena Vista’s offense.
“It took us a while to adjust to Buena Vista’s pace but once our block got set it controlled the match,” Clayberg said.
Central jumped to a 15-3 lead in the second set but struggled to maintain control as the Beavers battled back within four at 19-15.
“It was a major swing,” Clayberg said. “We missed some serves and shanked some passes. It got a little closer than it needed to be. But we played strong throughout the third set.”
The Dutch tack on the miles this week, heading to San Antonio, Texas, over fall break for the Trinity University Fall Classic. After a few days of sightseeing, Central meets Bethel (Minn.) (14-8) and Austin (Texas) (12-9) at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. Friday, respectively. The Dutch face Our Lady of the Lake (Texas) (8-11) and Trinity (9-12) Saturday.
“We’ll take a little break from academics, take a couple breaths and get back on the court to build on this momentum,” Clayberg said.