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Raiders sail by Jaguars in 4 games

FIELDING THE SPIKE — Martin Luther/Granada-Huntley-East Chain/Truman’s Johnnie Zaharia (middle) digs up a Nicollet spike during Valley Conference volleyball action Tuesday night in Northrop. Jaguar teammates Kambria Steinhaus (left) and Josie Clow watch the defensive gem. (Photo by Greg Abel)

NORTHROP — Hayley Selby and Olivia Whitmore racked up the kills to lead the Raiders past the Jaguars.

Nicollet beat Martin Luther/Granada-Huntley-East Chain/Truman 3-1 during volleyball action Tuesday night in Northrop.

Selby totaled 14 kills, while Whitmore spiked nine to lead the Raiders to a, 25-20, 25-15, 19-25, 25-18, Valley Conference win.

The teams stayed close in Game 1, tying at 10 before the Jaguars jumped ahead to a 16-13 advantage after a Josie Clow service ace, but the Raiders stormed back.

With Brooklyn Bode behind the service line, Kendall Robertson assisted Whitmore for a kill, then Bode served an ace. Whitmore then got back-to-back kills to put the Raiders up 19-16 before a service error got the Jaguars the ball back.

Marah Hulke then used one of her game-high 20 assists on a Whitmore kill to get Emily Lorentz the serve, where she hit back-to-back service aces to put the Radiers up 22-17.

Mallery Geistfeld hit a blocking ace to put Ella Nagorske behind the service line for the Jaguars, then Nagorske assisted Katelyn Diegnau for a kill to bring the Jaguars within three, but four hitting errors later, the Raiders claimed the opening game.

Game 2 started similarly, with the teams fighting to a tie at 9, before the Radiers jumped ahead.

Hulke served the Radiers to a 16-10 advantage with an ace and two assists, one to Roertson and one to Selby.

The Jaguars got back within four after Michaelah Petrowiak won a contest at the net for a kill, but the Raiders to a six-point advantage after a Bode blocking ace and the Jaguars never got back within five the rest of Game 2.

The Jaguars jumped ahead in Game 3.

Petrowiak opened the third contest with a blocking ace, then Kiana Preston hit a service ace and served the Jaguars to a 3-0 lead.

After swapping points, Kambria Steinhaus served the Jaguars to a 9-2 advantage with help from a Mallery Geistfeld blocking ace, a Clow-assisted Nagorske kill and a Nagorske-assisted Geistfeld kill.

Nagorske extended the lead to 11-3 with a service ace, then Johnnie Zaharia hit a service ace of her own to put the Jaguars up 13-6.

With Geistfeld behind the service line, Petrowiak and Diegnau combined for a blocking ace, Geistfeld hit a service ace and Nagorske assisted Diegnau for a kill, putting the Jaguars up 17-7.

The Raiders attempted to come back, but the advantage was too much to overcome and the Jaguars took the third contest to extend the match.

“It’s always nice when the other team cooperates a little bit,” Jaguar head coach Paul Steinhaus said. “They gave us a couple of points, but we did enough to withstand the end of that set. They pushed a little harder at the end, but we did enough to hang out. That was some good tenacity in our game.”

Whitmore served the Raiders to a major advantage in Game 4. A Lorentz-assisted Selby kill gave Whitmore the serve with a 12-6 lead, before she served three aces in six points to put the lead at 19-6, then the teams traded points to extend the advantage to 22-9, but the Jaguars wouldn’t leave without a fight.

Kambria Steinhaus took the serve for the Jaguars and hit an ace to bring the deficit to 23-12, then collected three more points to get to 23-15 before a Lorentz-assisted Brooklyn Gohr kill broke the streak and put the Raiders at match point.

Geistfeld hit a blocking ace to get the serve back for Nagorske, then Kaelynn Meixell hit a blocking ace before Steinhaus assisted Nagorske for a kill, one of her six, to put the Jaguars within 24-18.

The Raiders called a timeout to regroup, then Lorentz assisted Hulke for the match winning kill.

“We ended with a little bit of aggressive, positive, unwilling-to-die attitude,” Paul Steinhaus said. “Overall, our execution just is not quite there. But we got a chance to play, it might sound like a broken record, but the governer isn’t lending a lot of hope to us continuing our season. So if tonight was the night, we had a full season. We have a really great group of kids and that goes forward, too.”

Petrowiak and Geistfeld each had eight kills to lead the Jaguars, while Nagorske had 19 set assists. Kambria Steinhaus led the Jaguar defense with 24 digs, while Clow dug out 15 spikes. Preston had three service aces on 12-for-16 serving.

The Jaguars (1-9) travel to Trimont to face Martin County West at 7:15 p.m. Thursday.

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