The St. Catharine Patriots (9-8, 3-3 MSC) took the long road to Rio Grande (1-6, 0-5 MSC) Friday night hoping to right the track of their season.
After dropping three close matches to Lindsey Wilson the night before the Patriots were hungry for a victory and their meeting with the Red Storm provided just that. With multiple line-up regulars sitting, the Patriots were able to overcome the Red Storm’s onslaught of kills and capitalize on their 11 attack errors.
With the Patriots leading 2-0, after winning 25-23 and 27-25, the Patriots trailed the Red Storm 15-6 in the third and were feeling the fear of playing a fourth set. “It felt that they had our number in the third set” says Head Coach Jason McDannold. “The first two were close, so it’s not amazing that they had figured out how to score in bunches.” With the Patriots on their heels, Freshman Erin Cottrell (Somerset, Ky.) went on a 14-0 serving run, highlighted by three service aces. “Erin needed that” said McDannold. “Hopefully she will get her confidence back and be the strong player that we know that she can be.” The run propelled the Patriots to a 25-20 victory and gave them their third conference victory on the season.
The Patriots were led by the front line of Shauna Stone (Bardstown, Ky.) and Allie Southard (Louisville, Ky.) were able to get 22 kills combined, keeping the Rio defense off balance. “Our hitters were on tonight” says McDannold. “Abbey [Sorrells] (Elizabethtown, Ky.) gave them great sets (31 assists) and allowed them to keep us in the game.” Defensively Jodie Klein (Louisville, Ky.) and Rebecca Just (Louisville, Ky.) combined for 22 digs, keeping the Red Storm off the board.
The Patriots will hit the floor once more when they travel to conference foe Shawnee State (7-4, 2-3 MSC) on Tuesday at 6 PM.