|Girls volleyball takes second at tournament|
by Norv and Mary Coblentz · September 11, 2013
The West Liberty volleyball team placed second at the Grinnell Tournament, Saturday, Aug. 31, defeating Norwalk, Washington and Iowa Valley in pool play at Grinnell High School.
In their semi-final match, the Comets defeated the host team, Grinnell. However, in the championship game West Liberty lost 0-2 to the Clear Creek-Amana (CC-A) Clippers.
"I was, in some ways, surprised that we were in the finals," West Liberty Head Coach Ruben Galvan said. "I'm proud of the kids and how hard they played. The whole day they played aggressively, and they played as a team. I think that's the biggest thing."
Against Norwalk, West Liberty won in two sets, 21-13, 21-18. Hailey Daufeldt led the Comets in kills with six. Kayla Kaalberg had two aces. Maddie Simon, Molly Kelly, and Erika Bannovong had 100 percent serving and an ace each. Kelly led in digs with 11. Cassedi Simon had 16 assists and five blocks.
The Comets also defeated the Washington Demons in two, 21-17, 21-11. Daufeldt had eight kills, C. Simon had 15 assists, Kelly had 11 digs and three aces. Kaalberg had two aces, and Elyse Buysse had one ace.
Next, Iowa Valley lost to the Comets in two sets, 21-17, 21-11. Kaalberg had six kills and two aces. Daufeldt had 10 digs and three blocks. Kelly had 15 digs. Shannon McMichael had three blocks. C. Simon had 15 assists and M. Simon had 11 digs.
In its final win, West Liberty took Grinnell in two sets, 21-14, 21-16. Kaalberg led with seven kills. Kelly had 10 digs and two aces. C. Simon had 17 assists and an ace. M. Simon had 11 digs and an ace. Bannavong had 11-11 serving and an ace.
In the championship match, the CC-A Clippers walked away with both sets against the Comets, 21-17, 21-16.
Kaalberg got a kill to start the scoring, giving the Comets a 1-0 lead. The Clippers tied it with a kill, then two West Liberty errors put the Clippers up 3-1. Daufeldt got a kill, then the Comets scored another point to tie it at 3-3. The teams traded points to a 5-5 tie, then the Clippers started pulling away. Two Clippers kills and West Liberty not getting the ball back over the net resulted in an 8-5 lead for CC-A. A net serve by the Clippers made it 8-6, then Audra Bridenstine got a kill to pull the Comets to within one point.
Clear Creek got two kills and an ace before a West liberty kill made it 11-8. After two more Clipper's kills, Daufeldt tipped the ball over for a point. West Liberty served too long, then Kyleigh Becker got a kill for a 14-10 score. Clear Creek scored three more points on two kills and a Comets error. A dig by Kelly that landed in the corner of the court scored a point for West Liberty, making it 17-11. The Comets scored six more points in the set on a tip, an ace, three CC-A errors, and a placement by C. Simon. A Clear Creek ace ended the set at 21-17.
In the second set, the teams played to a 3-3 tie, then Clear Creek pulled ahead by three. A net serve by the Clippers and an ace by C. Simon made it 8-7, CC-A. The Clippers got three consecutive kills, then a CC-A kill attempt went out of bounds. The Comets hit the ball into the net, falling to a 12-8 deficit. The Comets tied the score at 12 with two kills by Daufeldt, an ace by Kelly, and a CC-A error. The Comets got a block, then CC-A tied it up at 13-13. West Liberty had a violation and hit the ball into the net, then they had a kill attempt go out of bounds.
An ace by the Clippers made it 17-14, then a serve out of bounds by CC-A brought the Comets back to within two points at 17-15. C. Simon tipped the ball for a point, but Clear Creek scored the next four points for the 21-16 win in the set and the 2-0 win in the match.
"They were ready to compete, and they really showed they were ready to compete today," Galvan said of his team. "They did a lot of nice things today.
"Right now we're about eight deep. So a lot of kids who haven't had very much playing time got some playing time. They got their feet wet," he added.