Raiders take 1st win of season
A step was taken in the right direction with Lake Park-Audubon's first win of the season Thursday, but there are plenty more to be had to get the Raiders to where they want to be.
The Raiders used a furious third-game comeback versus visiting Rothsay as a potential turning point to their young season, as they won 25-22, then disposed of the Tigers 25-19 in game four for the 3-1 victory.
"The third game comeback could be a turn around point of the season," said LP-A head coach Mike Summers. "We were down nine points, but battled back to tie it and eventually win.
"If we lost that third game, the confidence level could have easily come crashing down and we could have lost the match."
A loss to Rothsay would have spelled an 0-3 start to the season, something LP-A didn't want to happen.
But fortunately for the Raiders, they persevered through the game three struggles, after taking game one 25-18, but losing the second 25-21.
It was a timeout during the third game where things started to come together for the Raiders.
"We were struggling with our passing and fell down by nine points, so I had to take a timeout," Summers said.
"During that timeout, we just looked each other in the eyes and made the commitment to not stop playing."
The Raiders turned it around quickly, as their attack was strong, passing accurate and the blocking turned back the Tigers' offense.
The serving was much stronger than in LP-A's first two losses, with 10 aces combined between three players.
Junior Bailee Bartunek had four aces, while seniors Carissa Raaen and Emma Ulmer each had three.
Ulmer added 21 digs, while junior Rilee Burnside had 22 assists and Bartunek led in kills with 11.
The win puts LP-A at 1-2. They played in the Pelican Rapids Tournament Saturday and will host Ada-Borup Tuesday for a 7 p.m. start.
"We took some steps forward, but we still have plenty to clean up," Summers said. "We are still not close to our mid-season stride, yet."
Rothsay at Lake Park-Audubon, Thursday, Sept. 6.
Raiders 3, Tigers 1
(25-18, 21-25, 25-22, 25-19)
Raider stat leaders -- Aces: Bailee Bartunek 4, Carissa Raaen 3, Emma Ulmer 3...Digs: Ulmer 21, Bartunek 16, Cheyanne Nelson 15...Assists: Rilee Burnside 22, Ulmer 11...Kills: Bartunek 11, Becca Schermer 9, Ulmer 5...Blocks: Schermer 3 solo, 2 assisted; Bartunek 3 S; Raaen 2 S, 1 A.
(Follow Brian Wierima on Twitter at DLSportsGuy.)