Girls volleyball: Munster can’t dig out of hole at semistate
By Dave Melton Post-Tribune correspondent November 2, 2013 11:02PM
Updated: December 4, 2013 6:53AM
HUNTINGTON — It seemed like the majority of Elkhart Central’s rallies were quickly countered by a Munster response.
But in the end, a 2-0 deficit proved to be too much to overcome, as Munster’s season ended with a 3-1 loss to Elkhart Central (30-3).
“I felt like they were a little bit nervous and just playing really tight,” Munster (34-4) coach Tracy Summers said of the first two games. “But I was really proud of the way stepped it up in Games 3 and 4. Our offense executed a lot better and we served more aggressively. That’s how we’ve played all year.”
In the first game, Munster rallied from 16-11 and 24-21 deficits to take a 25-24 lead. But three straight points from Elkhart — with the final two coming on kills from Purdue-bound Azariah Stahl — gave the Blazers a 27-25 victory in Game 1.
“Sometimes, when you saw her kills going over our blocks, that just shows you how high she can get,” Summers said of Stahl, who had an incredible 37 kills in the match. “We tried to get them out of system but, as their outside hitter, they can still get her the ball even when they’re out of system.”
Munster didn’t fare much better in Game 2, as Elkhart Central grabbed a quick 8-3 lead, kept a large advantage at 19-13 and eventually took its second straight game of the match with a 25-17 score.
Between the second and third games, some minor adjustments resulted in a renewed energy for the Mustangs in Game 3.
“We focused more on our serve receive to get a good pass so we could run some stuff,” said Munster senior Elizabeth Kloos, who, along with Shannon Farrell, had a team-high 12 kills.
The Mustangs grabbed five of the first six points in Game 3 while jumping out to a 17-7 lead. Elkhart would come back to tie the match at 24. But a pair of long rallies ended in Mustangs points, as Munster took Game 3 26-24.
Elkhart Central led 19-13 in Game 4, before Munster rebounded — again — to tie the game at 22. But the Blazers would put the match away just four points later, winning Game 4 25-23 to advance to the next round.