Despite the storm that raged outside, there was a storm of sorts inside the Waukee Field House as the Class 5A seventh-ranked Warriors bested visiting Mason City in three sets Tuesday night.
It marked the 23rd overall win of the season for the Warriors who not sit with an overall mark of 23-8. Head coach Danielle Lynch and her Warrior squad captured their 17th match sweep and 12th straight match sweep victory dating back to the beginning of September. The Warriors captured a set one victory with a late surge 25-21 while taking commanding wins in sets two and three 25-16 and 25-14. It was an overall match where the only faults against the Warriors came on their own accord which was most visible in the opening set.
“We played very well overall and we didn’t let them beat us,” said coach Lynch. “On the flip side, the only time we faltered was when we hurt ourselves. We gathered ourselves the rest of the way and it showed us that if we play our brand of volleyball, we’re nearly unbeatable.”
Waukee captured an eight game-high 35 kills on the night as they bounced back nicely from a three-set defeat to Valley in their last outing. Leading the way in the kills department was senior Kate Nelson who posted 12 kills on the night, far eclipsing her average of 2.5 kills per set heading into the match. Leading the way in digs was the familiar name of Kori Knox who captured 12 digs as part of a 37 dig night for the Warriors as a whole. Knox played a big part in getting the Warriors back on track with ball control as the match wore on.
“In the first set we struggled with ball control but then we really picked it up in the second set which helped us get out of our own way and limit errors,” said Lynch. “Kori has been so fun to watch this year. She really kept us centered and keeps us strong in serve/receive which she has done all season for us.”
It was their best performance in terms of digs since Sept. 17.
Set two was a good depiction of the fast start that Waukee is capable of which was followed by a similar set three that had the Warriors up 7-3 in the final set. A five-point performance by Layanna Green at the serving line pushed the set three lead for Waukee to 12-5 before a 19-8 lead and the eventual 25-14 final.
Next up for the Warriors will be the competitive Urbandale tournament Saturday, Oct. 5. Waukee will be among 16 teams including Class 3A 13th ranked Des Moines Christian, Class 2A’s top-ranked Western Christian, Class 4A’s tenth-ranked Dallas Center-Grimes, along with Ames, Des Moines East, Des Moines Lincoln, HLV, Indianola, Johnston, LeMars, Pella, Sioux City North, Southeast Polk, Class 5A’s third-ranked West Des Moines Valley, and Urbandale. The tournament will begin at 8 a.m.