Winless Blue Hawks host VCSUThe road has been hard on the Dickinson State volleyball team. Twelve matches. Zero wins.
By: Dustin Monke, The Dickinson Press
The road has been hard on the Dickinson State volleyball team.
Twelve matches. Zero wins.
That’s the tally as the Blue Hawks begin their truncated Dakota Athletic Conference schedule against Valley City State (4-9) in their first home match of the season at 7 p.m. today at Scott Gymnasium.
However, now that all eligibility issues have been cleared, and with the team she had hoped to have from the outset of the year practicing together for the past two weeks, DSU first-year head coach Maura Bronte-Pfeifer is excited to get her team on the floor together.
“They’re just excited that we’re here in front of our fans and get to show them all the improvement we’ve had, because we definitely are a different team from the first week to where we are now,” Bronte-Pfeifer said.
Forgive Bronte-Pfeifer if she would like to forget the first month of the season.
Through their 12 matches, the Blue Hawks have been swept seven times and picked up only six set victories.
The closest they came to a win was during a five-set loss to York (Neb.) College, which they led 2-0 before falling short in the next three sets.
Junior transfers Brianny Williams and Ebony Sanders had to sit the first eight matches because of new NAIA transfer eligibility procedures.
That hindered the team’s development, Bronte-Pfeifer said.
At times, she was scratching to put together a full team and even had to put 5-foot-5 sophomore defensive specialist Katelyn Christensen at a outside hitter position to fill the gaps.
Those problems won’t affect the Blue Hawks now.
“It’s nice to have a set lineup where you know who you’re going to be playing next to and you know that person,” Christensen said. “It’s just easier.”
Nonetheless, they still have a lot of work to do.
As a team, the Blue Hawks have a .084 attacking percentage, a number similar to baseball’s batting average, while their opponents are hitting .244.
Senior Jennifer Hartman leads DSU with 86 kills, about 2.3 per set, and Williams is averaging a team-best 3 kills per set through four matches.
“The more we play together, the more comfortable everybody is,” Christensen said. “It’s just getting to know who you’re playing next to and coming together. But we are coming together.”
Law enforcement, firefighters to be recognized, honored before match
Tonight is Law Enforcement Appreciation night at Scott Gym.
Dickinson Police Department officers will be at the game and in uniform and there will be tributes held for law enforcement officials and firefighters.
Those being honored and remembered incude: former DSU student Trampus Haskvitz, a firefighter who died in August from injuries sustained while battling a fire in South Dakota’s Black Hills; Sgt. Steven Kenner, who in July became Bismarck’s first police officer killed in the line of duty; Bryan Gross, a Converse County (Wyo.) deputy who died attempting to save a girl from a flooding river; and all those whose lives were lost on Sept. 11, 2001.