Fighting for a win
Dickinson High volleyball coach Jay Schobinger was getting a little nervous during Game 4 of his team's match against Bismarck Century.
Instead of rolling to an easy win to close out the game and the match, the Patriots made it too close for comfort.
However, two key plays from senior outside hitter Leslie Beaudoin closed out the match as Dickinson won its West Region opener Thursday night at the DHS gymnasium 25-20, 20-25, 25-23, 26-24.
"We gave up a lot of big runs tonight," Schobinger said. "A lot of big runs. That's one of the things you can't do against big teams. We were just fortunate we found a way to come out on top."
With Game 4 tied at 24, Beaudoin tallied a kill to put the Midgets ahead. Her push on to the back corner on match point gave Dickinson the win.
It shouldn't have been that close, though, as Dickinson led 16-9 before the Patriots rattled off nine straight points off of junior Alexis Jacobs' serve. She hit three aces during the run.
Dickinson (7-1 overall, 1-0 West Region) responded with a small run of its own, scoring five straight points before the Patriots (6-3, 1-1) managed to eke back into the game.
"We're running anywhere from four to five new faces on the varsity floor and at times, it showed that," Century head coach Jeni Walsh said.
Patriots senior AJ Jacobs had a match-high 18 kills.
Midgets senior Jess Herauf was close behind with 16. Herauf led everyone with 26 digs.
Both teams battled back and fourth in Game 3 as neither side could put together more than a two-point lead.
Junior Madison Deibert, seeing her first action of the season after coming back from a sprained foot, got the match-point kill to give the Midgets a 2-1 lead.
"I was a little nervous at first, then I came out and got used to the game," she said.
Schobinger isn't in a hurry to rush her on the court full time. Deibert played in about half of the match's points.
"We're not going to wear her down," Schobinger said. "When she's in, we want her to be effective."
One part of the game Dickinson lacked, especially early, was spreading the ball across the front row.
"We told Kara (Froelich) you have to give Leslie involved," Schobinger said. "In Game 2 and really in Game 3, it was non-existent. Once we got that going, we were in pretty good shape."
Dickinson doesn't get much time off. It takes on Jamestown at 6 p.m. tonight at the DHS gymnasium.
Century 20 25 23 24 -- 1
Dickinson 25 20 25 26 -- 3
Kills: BC, AJ Jacobs 18, Alicia Baumiller 11, Kelsey Glatt 4, Ann Govig 4, Shelby Svihovec 4, Lexi Ely 2, Hannah Larson 1. D, Jess Herauf 16, Leslie Beaudoin 10, Madison Deibert 5, Tracy Nash 5, Melissa Sipma 5.
Blocks: BC, Jacobs 3, Glatt 2, Govig 2, Svihovec 2, Larson 1, Tyler Loraas 1. D, Katie Hewson 6, Beaudoin 5, Kara Froelich 2, Herauf 2.
Aces: BC, Jacobs 7, Baumiller 5, Tessa Neameyer 2, Ely 1. Froelich 1, Hewson 1, Herauf 1, Nash 1.
Digs: BC, Jacobs 25, Neameyer 24, Baumiller 17, Loraas 11, Govig 3, Molly Perkins 3, Svihovec 3, Glatt 2. D, Herauf 26, Froelich 17, Molly Miller 16.
Assists: BC, Loraas 38, Glatt 1. D, Froelich 35.