Wildfire fizzle out against Titans at home
Trinity defeats Mott-Regent in 3-0 sweep in Mott
MOTT, N.D. - The Mott-Regent Wildfire brought their spark to the prairies of southwest North Dakota on Thursday in a class B Region 7 volleyball match-up against the Trinity Titans at the Mott Armory.
Despite the home court advantage, the Titans quenched the fires in three fast-paced sets, the squelching Mott-Regent in a 0-3 defeat to bring the Wildfire to an early season record of 0-2.
The Titans were offensively dominant right out of the gates, challenging the Wildfire on the perimeters repeatedly. Trinity maintained their aggression and speed throughout each of the three sets, until Mott-Regent mustered an attempted rally late. Their comeback effort however didn’t last, as Trinity quickly retaliated and regained the lead to finish the third 25-21.
Trinity junior middle hitter Olivia Kessel was powerful on the opposing side of the net and was instrumental in the Titans' ability to guard the net. Kessel’s 9 kills and 4 blocks went unanswered by the Wildfire who scrambled throughout much of the night in an effort to maintain any control. Titans middle hitter Ava Jahner was unstoppable with 9 digs and 6 kills. Along side her, Trinity junior setter Delaney Deschamp racked up 25 assists for the Titans, far more than any player on either team.
“Mott challenged us at times and pushed at our weaknesses that we need to work on,” Breanna Sisson, Trinity head coach, said. “We made a ton of hitting errors and service errors, so hopefully we can start to clean those up.”
Leading the Wildfire in digs was senior libero Jenessa Zentner, who was substituted midway through the third due courtesy of a minor finger injury. Recently, Zentner reached her 1,000th career dig. She has been playing volleyball for four years and says she knew the Titans would be hitting hard.
“We had to get low and pop it up as best as we could,” Zentner said. “There is a lot of excitement about it when you get a long rally.”
Sandy Huether, Mott-Regent head coach, said she was proud of her whole team for keeping the score tight.
“They pulled together as a team and we worked really had on our offense,” Huether said. “We are scrappy…and everyone stepped up today. I was impressed with the coverage and the passing.”
Despite their continuous efforts, compared to the Titans, the Wildfire came up short in kills and blocks and were ultimately not as quick on recovery.
Junior right side hitter Kendra Auch was an offensive driving force for the Wildfire, keeping them close all evening with 4 crucial assists, 2 kills and 6 digs.
“Last year Trinity killed us,” Huether said. “We competed today and that was our goal. We did it.”
Trinity Titans def Mott-Regent Wildfire 3-0, (25-16, 25-14, 25-21)
Titans Team Leaders: Kills – 9, Olivia Kessel, 6, Ava Jahner Aces - 4, Jahner Blocks – 4, Kessel Digs – 9, Jahner Assists – 25, Delaney Deschamp
Mott-Regent Team Leaders: Kills – 2 Kendra Auch Aces – 4, Auch Blocks – 3, Anna Nasset Digs – 10, Jenessa Zentner, 9, Kierra Wiesinger Assists – 4, Auch