LINCOLN – For Crete plenty of aces were in the Cards favor, however the Dukes came up with the only W.
York survived an avalanche of ace serves by the Crete Cardinals, but when the match was on the line the Dukes got the ball to the hot hand and won 3-2 in B-4 District volleyball action at Lincoln North Star Tuesday night.
York lost the first set 25-16 as the Crete girls stung seven ace serves past the Dukes’ defense, but York bounced back in the next two sets 25-21 and 25-22, before the Cardinals forced a deciding fifth set with a 25-19 win.
In the fifth set the Dukes fell behind 2-0, but went on a 7-1 run and never looked back, winning 15-9 and putting their hat in the ring for a chance at a Class B state berth when they play Thursday at 7 p.m. against Seward.
York head coach Kayla Makovicka, breathed a heavy sigh of relief following York’s second five-set win over the Cardinals in the past week.
“We know that it’s never going to be a 3-0 match against this team, they are just too resilient and have too many good athletes," Makovicka said. “We expect the match to go four or five sets, but we didn’t expect to get out to the start we did. They served real tough and the girl who served the best, we didn’t see that from her the first time we played so we were not prepared for it.”
Crete and York were tied at 20-20 in the second set, when Erica Koehler drilled back-to-back kills to give the Dukes some breathing room at 23-21. After Koehler’s smashes, York senior Sarah Stephens followed suit with two of her 10 kills in the match and York tied the score at 1-1.
In the third set Crete led early, but York took the lead at 21-19 and Koehler, Aleah Rosenau and Stephens didn’t allow the Cards to get it back in a 25-22 win.
Crete led early and held on to force a fifth set with a 25-19 win in set four.
York fell behind 2-0 as Kalie Uher scored an ace block for Crete and an attack into the net put the Dukes down.
York setter Olivia Stubbs then found the Dukes’ hot hands as Koehler smashed four kills, Stephens added a pair and Rosenau added three to force Crete timeouts at 7-3 and 11-6.
York’s final point came on a wide attack from Cardinal Kaitlin Bradley who led all players with 27 kills.
“Olivia was able to get the ball to our hot hands and that was probably one of the best sets we have played all year,” Makovicka said. “When we play with a lot of energy we are a very good team, it’s when we don’t play with that high energy we get in trouble.”
York finished with 62 team kills and unofficially Stubbs had 47 assists. Leading the way were four York players in double numbers as Rosenau had 21, Koehler 17 and Stephens 10.
Crete had 48 team kills and other than Bradley’s 27, Morgan Hill added nine. The Cardinals were charted with 19 service aces led by Alivia Anthony with six. Five each were recorded by Alexandria Edwards and Tayler Doremus.