FORT DODGE – The Nevada volleyball team went through its second-consecutive weekend tournament gauntlet Saturday as the Cubs finished 3-3 at a tough Fort Dodge Invitational.
Nevada, the No. 6 team in Class 3A, suffered losses to two 5A schools and an elite 2A power at Fort Dodge. The Cubs’ three victories included a win over a rated 4A school and a triumph over a 5A program as their season record moved to 12-8.
The Cubs’ biggest victory was a two-set sweep over a Lewis Central squad rated No. 9 in 4A. Nevada prevailed in impressive fashion, winning by scores of 21-15 and 21-11.
Middle blocker Kati Cassabaum had seven kills and two blocks and outside hitters Megan Pringnitz and Abby Stephenson each tallied four kills to lead Nevada against Lewis Central. Pringnitz also had four digs and two aces and Stephenson finished with one block and two digs, assists and aces apiece.
Michaela Matuska handed out 15 assists and finished with two kills and one block and one ace apiece. Emma Lodestein delivered three kills and one block, Peyton Dugger delivered seven digs, Erin Francis had six digs and Mara Rhodes picked up one kill.
Nevada downed 5A program Fort Dodge by scores of 21-17 and 21-15. The Cubs had a .177 kill-efficiency rate and nine aces against the host school.
Pringnitz hammered home nine kills and added five digs and one block against Fort Dodge. Cassabaum and Stephenson each added four kills; Cassabaum chipped in two digs and a block and Stephenson contributed six digs and one assist.
Matuska finished with 21 assists, three digs and one block; Lodestein had three kills; Rhodes picked up two kills and one block; Dugger contributed six digs and Francis added five. Francis was also Nevada’s top server by going 11 of 14 with four aces, Lodestein chipped in three aces and Dugger finished with two.
Nevada swept Osage by margins of 21-12 and 21-14 for its other victory in the tournament. The Cubs had a .298 kill-efficiency rate and four aces in the win.
Stephenson put up 10 kills against just two errors in 16 attacks and she also recorded six digs again in the win over Osage. Cassabaum was also a big weapon at the net in delivering eight kills and two blocks and Rhodes added two kills.
Matuska recorded 17 assists, two blocks and two aces, Dugger went 16 of 17 serving and added six digs, Francis put up five digs, one kill and an ace, Pringnitz came away with four digs and one kill and Lodestein also finished with a kill.
The Cubs’ two losses to 5A schools came against Ames and Ankeny Centennial.
Nevada gave Ames a great fight before coming up short. The Cubs won a 21-18 battle in the first set, lost the second by a 21-17 score and then suffered a 15-11 setback in the rally game.
A sluggish attack hurt Nevada in the loss. The Cubs had a meager .035 kill-efficiency rate with 19 kills and 16 attack errors and the Cubs were also only 43 of 49 serving.
Stephenson finished with six kills, 10 digs and one block and Cassabaum had five kills and one block against Ames. Pringnitz had four kills, four digs and one block, Rhodes finished with four kills and one block, Matuska handed out 18 assists and tallied seven digs and one block and Francis produced eight digs and went 13 of 15 serving with five aces.
Nevada struggled with Ankeny Centennial and Western Christian.
Ankeny Centennial defeated the Cubs by scores of 21-9 and 21-13. Nevada only finished with nine kills against eight attack errors and the Cubs had no blocks in the match.
Cassabaum and Stephenson both had three kills and Lodestein, Pringnitz and Rhodes added one apiece against Ankeny Centennial. Matuska finished with six assists and four digs, Pringnitz picked up Nevada’s only ace serve in the match and Stephenson also had four digs.
Western Christian – the second-ranked team in 2A and a state tournament finalist each of the past three seasons – whipped Nevada by a 21-6 score in the opening set between the two teams. The Wolfpack also cruised to a 21-13 victory in the second set to win the match.
Nevada really struggled with its attack versus the Wolfpack in picking up 11 attack errors against just eight kills. The Cubs also went without a block and they also contributed only two aces serving the ball.
Cassabaum, Pringnitz and Stephenson each tallied two kills against Western Christian and Stephenson and Pringnitz also added four digs apiece. Francis had six digs, Matuska finished with seven assists, two digs and one kill and Rhodes chipped in one kill.
NEVADA – After a grueling tournament at Southeast Polk the previous weekend, Nevada got back to its quest for a repeat Heart of Iowa Conference championship by sweeping Collins-Maxwell-Baxter Sept. 17 at the Nevada High School Field House.
Nevada downed an improved CMB squad with ease, winning by scores of 25-13, 25-12 and 25-20 to improve to 4-0 in the HOIC and 9-5 overall. The Cubs – ranked sixth in Class 3A – had gone 2-3 at Southeast Polk and freshman middle blocker Kati Cassabaum said that the match against CMB is exactly what her team needed to get back in a good groove.
“That tournament really helped us tonight,” Cassabaum said. “Coach (James Brockway) really wanted us to work on being more together and not getting down on ourselves. Tonight instead of just clapping our hands in the middle (after a point) we all came together and touched.”
Cassabaum, just a sophomore, said the match was also good to get more confidence built up for the less-experienced players on the team.
“We lost a lot of good players (from) last year,” Cassabaum said. “We have a lot of new people coming up and we’re learning to trust each other as a team.”
Cassabaum had nine kills and two blocks on the night. She was part of a strong Cub attack that posted a .236 kill-efficiency rate with 35 kills and 14 errors in 89 attacks.
Megan Pringnitz led Nevada in kills with 12 and she added three digs, two assists and a pair of aces. Mara Rhodes finished with five kills and an ace and Emma Lodestein and Abby Stephenson tallied three kills apiece.
Lodestein and Stephenson also had four digs and two aces apiece. Michaela Matuska tallied 24 assists, six digs, one block and three aces on a 15 of 15 serving night and she also slammed home two kills.
Erin Francis recorded six digs, three aces and one kill, Jessica Helton totaled five digs and three aces, Alli Fey handed out one assist and Megan Anderson delivered an ace. As a team Nevada totaled an impressive 17 aces on the night.
CMB dropped to 3-4 overall and 0-2 in the HOIC with the loss. The Raiders had a .173 kill-efficiency rate with 18 kills and nine errors on 52 attacks and they went 42 of 47 serving with three aces.
Abbie Haupert produced eight kills and digs apiece plus one block and Payge Jurgens slammed home seven kills and tacked on three digs and two aces on a 13 of 15 serving effort for the Raiders. Abbey Appelgate added 13 digs, two assists and one kill and Mackenzie Schmitz finished with 13 assists and two digs.