Kenai volleyball edges Nikiski in five games

  • By Staff Report
  • Tuesday, September 16, 2014 11:52pm
  • Sports

The Kenai Central volleyball squad escaped Nikiski with a five-game victory over the Bulldogs Tuesday night. Kenai won 3-2 with game scores of 23-25, 25-17, 25-14, 23-25 and 15-6. Kenai improved its nontournament season record to 1-2, while Nikiski dropped to 2-4.

Kenai coach Tracie Beck said after being swept in two matches to Kodiak over the weekend, the long ferry ride home left the Kards plenty of time to think about things.

“I think part of us believe we shouldn’t have picked a Tuesday game after Kodiak to play again,” Beck said. “We were happy to be on land, and I feel like our feet still quite weren’t under us tonight.”

Kenai senior Kiana Harding led the attack with 12 kills and two aces, while teammates Abby Beck, Alli Steinbeck and Amber Walters had six kills each. Jamie Bagley notched 17 digs, Sierra Hall had four aces and Walters provided 12 assists.

After the Bulldogs rallied back to tie the match up in the fourth game, Beck said Kenai’s hitting took over in the tiebreaker game.

“We finally kind of played well and the fifth game was our best game,” Beck said. “We were able to put the ball down and take care of business as far as communicating.”

After hearing that sophomore Ayla Pitt would be out due to illness, Nikiski coach Stacey Segura said she was forced to make a rotation lineup change for the second straight game.

“I thought that after completely losing our main middle against Kenai, going to five games with them was a huge deal,” Segura said. “Our passing was good but the hitting was off … I’m proud of them in stepping up tonight.”

After being put in the middle hitter’s position Saturday against Houston, senior Rachel Thompson returned to her setter role and racked up 14 assists, seven kills, and four serving aces. Teammate Laura Hufford amassed 24 digs, Lauren O’Brien had four kills and freshman Varity Feltman had three kills and two blocks in place of Pitt in the middle hitter position.

“(Feltman) showed up and played really well in her first game,” Segura said. “It was a big step for her.”

Kenai will be competing at the West Spiketacular in Anchorage this weekend, the first time the Kards are scheduled to appear in that tournament in over three years. Nikiski will host Seward, Thursday at 5:30 p.m.

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