On the second day of the Subway Invite, the North Platte Community College volleyball team earned a split on Saturday by beating Northeastern Junior College after dropping a match to Casper College.
NPCC coach Sally Thalken was reasonably pleased with the 2-2 start on the season considering that this has been the toughest field the Lady Knights have faced at the Subway Invite in some time.
"I feel like we can learn a lot about ourselves if we play tough competition," Thalken said.
North Platte was reeling after losing 19-25, 25-14, 25-22, 25-20 to Casper. But they played their best match of the tournament and knocked off Northeastern Junior College 25-22, 19-25, 25-19, 25-21 to end the weekend with some momentum.
The Knights took the first set against Northeastern to get some confidence. But they fell behind 13-10 in the second set after making two straight hitting errors and that was enough for the Plainswomen to even the match up.
NPCC jumped out to an 8-2 lead in the third after an ace served by Samantha Byrn. But that lead evaporated and NJC took an 11-9 lead after two straight aces by Jazmin Montes. But the Lady Knights rebounded and took a 14-13 lead on a kill by Sam Kennedy. North Platte then won the next two plays and they never looked back to win the third.
The fourth set was a battle but the Knights took a 19-17 lead when Taylor King made a kill. NPCC led the rest of the way and they closed it out by scoring three straight points with Byrn making two blocks and Kennedy getting a kill.
"NJC is a good team," Thalken said. "We earned that victory. We played pretty fair defense and we got people who can attack. We played for one another."
Against Casper in the first match of the day, the Lady Knights won the first set but they faltered in the last three.
"We didn't play as well (against Casper)," Thalken said. "Casper capitalized on our miscues."