The North Platte Community College volleyball team defeated Eastern Wyoming College and Colby Community College on Saturday to finish the Subway Invite undefeated."We're pretty tickled to be 4-0 but it's only the beginning," NPCC coach Sally Thalken said. "We've got to put in a lot of work and get much better."
The Lady Knights had no problem with Eastern Wyoming in the first match of the day. NPCC swept the Lancers 25-19, 25-12, 25-12.
In the first set, the Knights broke away late after falling behind 9-4. But it was all NPCC in the second and third sets.
Thalken said that she was impressed by how her team handled Eastern Wyoming.
"Eastern Wyoming is a tough team and they're a better team than they showed against us," she said. "We jumped on them and took the wind out of their sails."
NPCC then finished the tournament with a hard fought 25-22, 27-25, 26-24, 25-20, 15-9 victory over Colby.
The Lady Knights took control late in the first set by taking a 20-17 lead and that was enough of a cushion for them to take a one set advantage.
North Platte had to setpoints in the second set. But Colby fought them off on both occasions before the Trojans won the set.
The third match also went beyond 25 points but this time it was the Knights who were victorious.
But in the fourth set, Colby kept gaining steam and the Trojans took a commanding 21-13 lead. A late run by NPCC made the score of the fourth set closer than it may have felt.
But that fourth set rally wasn't futile as it helped turned the tide for the fifth set.
"I thought we gained something in the fourth quarter," Thalken said. "I think it carried over into the fifth."
In the fifth, Kylie Wroot made kills on each of the first two plays to give NPCC a 2-0 lead.
Then after Lorena Rosario made a kill to give Colby its first point. The Lady Knights scored the next three points to go up 5-1 with Sam Kennedy getting kills on each of the last two points of the mini run.
The Trojans battled and got within 7-6 after an ace served by Kamryn Forrest. But Sandrina Hallahan got a kill on the following play to give the serve back to the Knights.
Sabrina Hallahan then ran off five straight points as NPCC took firm control of the set.
After the run by Sabrina Hallahan, the Lady Knights scored the final two points to win the match and finish their annual season-opening tournament undefeated for the first time since the Subway Invite's inception in 2004.
"Every team we played this weekend is big and explosive," Thalken said. "We beat them in transition. We played good defense and we passed the ball well."
There were six teams in the tournament. Northeastern Junior College also went 4-0. Colby Community College was 2-2. Williston State College was 1-3, Sheridan College was 1-3. and Eastern Wyoming College was 0-4.