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New Ulm match goes to five games – again

By Staff | Sep 29, 2008

As Yankee great Yogi Berra once said, “It’s like deja-vu all over again.”

Less than three weeks ago the New Ulm Eagles hosted the Blue Earth Area Buccaneers in a thrilling volleyball match that saw the Bucs come back from a two games to one deficit to win the match 3 games to 2 – winning the final game in a lengthy battle.

The Eagles came to Blue Earth Tuesday night looking to avenge that loss and once again jumped out to a two games to one lead. But, the Bucs battled back and won the match by winning the next two games – the final one in overtime.

The win kept the Bucs undefeated in conference play while the Eagles now have the two defeats at the hands of the Bucs in their loss column.

“This was a team effort; we had to pull ourselves up after getting down,” said Coach Donna Lee. “Our motto this year is ‘All Together’ and the girls stuck together to earn the win.”

These are two evenly matched teams as the games reflected. Game 1 saw the teams tied seven times before the Eagles pulled away for a 25-16 win.

The Bucs pulled away to a 7-3 lead in the second game before the Eagles came back to tie it at 8-8. The game then was tied 12 more times before reaching 23-23.

It was Kirsten Johanson who stepped to the line with the game tied at 23 and served the final two points to tie the match at one game apiece.

Game 3 saw the Bucs gain an early advantage again as they opened up a four point lead at 9-5. The Eagles fought their way back and took the lead for good at 15-14 on their way to a 25-19 win.

Faced with elimination, the Bucs opened up a seven-point lead at 16-9 in the fourth game. They still had a six-point advantage at 21-15 before the Eagles mounted a spirited comeback to grab a 22-21 lead.

Just when it looked like the night was going to end badly for the Bucs, they stood firm and came back to claim another 25-23 victory.

So it was on to the fifth and deciding game. The Bucs jumped on top with an 8-4 lead, but anybody who thought they were going to run away with the win really should have known better. The game was tied at nine and then at 12.

The Eagles tallied their third straight point to take a 13-12 lead and appeared to have the momentum. However, they served one into the net to knot the score at 13 all.

Danika Stindtman stepped to the line and the Bucs got a point to go ahead 14-13. Then she served one into the net to tie the game at 14.

The Eagles took a 15-14 lead before a side out gave the ball back to the Bucs with the score tied at 15. Sydney Ristau served for one point to make it 16-15, but her next serve sailed into the net and once again the teams were tied – this time at 16.

Just when fans thought they’d seen it all, the New Ulm server put her ball into the net and the Bucs had regained the lead at 17-16. Hayley Pirsig was the next server for the Bucs and she got her serve over the net. The Eagles were guilty of an illegal hit and the Bucs had come away with an 18-16 victory in the game and had won the match.

Of the 10 games that the Eagles and Bucs have played this year, seven have been decided by four points or less. Five games have been decided by two points, including three overtime games – the Bucs winning all five of those.

Leading the way with 17 kills was Danika Stindtman followed by Kate Hassing with 12 and Sydney Ristau with nine. Stindtman was also the leader with 25 digs, while Jenny Smith had 16 and Morgan Dickman added 13.

Kirsten Johanson recorded 33 set assists and was 18 of 19 at the service line. Also having good nights serving were Stindtman who was 17 of 18 with two aces, Hassing who was 16 of 18, and Smith who was 15 of 15. Dickman recorded two aces while going 8 of 8 from the line. Hayley Pirsig connected on 11 of 12 serves and Ristau ended the night 10 out of 11 from the service line.

Bucs lose to No. 2-ranked Windom

The Bucs hit a speed bump Monday, Sept. 22, in their 2008 schedule.

The Bucs hosted the Windom Eagles and were defeated by the Class A No. 2 ranked team in three games.

Scores were 25-16, 25-12, 25-9.

The loss put the Bucs overall record at 8-3, but still are perfect in the conference at 5-0.

Jenny Smith and Danika Stindtman were both perfect form the serving line for the Bucs. Smith was 8 of 8 and Stindtman was 7 of 7. Both had three aces.

Smith also had nine digs, while Morgan Dickman added six.

Kirsten Johansen had just five set assists. As a team, the Bucs had six kills.