NAIA National Championships
Dordt defeats Corban 3-1 (25-22, 25-20, 21-25, 25-19)
HOW IT HAPPENED
Dordt College advanced to the NAIA National Championship quarterfinal round with a 3-1 win over Corban in the first round of the 16-team elimination bracket on Friday morning at 9:00 AM.
Dordt started well as the Defenders raced out to a 14-8 lead that the Warriors cut to 16-13 on a kill by Lauren Condon. An Elizabeth Kiel kill put Dordt up 17-13 and the lead stayed at three and four points until back to back kills by Brooke Granstra gave the Defenders a 20-15 edge. The lead eventually grew to 22-16 after a Corban attack error but the Warriors battled back. A run of four points in a row trimmed the difference to 23-22 but a Haley Moss kill followed by a Kiel block gave Dordt the opening set 25-22.
Set two saw Dordt build a 20-14 lead but the Cascade Conference member cut the lead in half as Amber Parker knocked a kill through to get the difference to 23-20. A Jamie Gesink kill put the Defenders up 24-20 and an attack error by Parker ended the set with Dordt prevailing 25-20.
The Defenders appeared ready to finish the match in three as Dordt raced to a 12-7 lead but Corban owned the rest of the set. The Warriors outscored Dordt 13-4 and led 20-16. Dordt rallied to cut the gap to 21-20 on an Ema Altena kill but the Warriors held off the rally 25-21.
Set four featured eight ties, the last one at 10-10. A service error by Corban started a five point streak for Dordt and was capped by a Julia Lindbergh kill. A Parker kill stopped the streak momentarily but Dordt scored five of the next six points and lead 20-12. Corban got as close as six by a Haley Moss kill and an Ema Altena kill proved the final two points for the Defenders as they won 25-19.
WHAT IT MEANS
Dordt advances to the NAIA National Quarterfinals for the first time since 2003 when the Defenders finished in the semifinal round of the event which was held in San Diego, California.
The Defenders will face Columbia on Friday night at 6:00 pm. Columbia is the defending champion and started this season slowly before coming on late in the year.
Columbia is in its 23rd straight NAIA Championship and is a four-time champion and five-time runner up.
Dordt is 12th championship and is in the quarterfinals for the fifth time.
The winner of the Dordt-Columbia match will face the winner of the Midland-Lindsey Wilson contest in the semifinals on Saturday morning at 11:00 AM.
Dordt hit for a .285 kill efficiency with 65 kills and 18 errors. Corban had 59 kills and 22 errors and a .214 kill efficiency.
Haley Moss had 16 kills and Brooke Granstra 15 for the Defenders while Julia Lindbergh and Ema Altena had 11 and 10 each.
Jamie Gesink put up 46 assists and Summer Jansen got to 35 digs and Gesink had 11.
Altena recorded four ace serves and Granstra was in on five block assists. Elizabeth Kiel had Dordt’s only solo block and helped on three blocks.
COACH HANSON SAID
On the third set struggles…. “The wall was visible in skill areas it was visible on our faces and I was pleased we could rebound from it and recover and finish out a strong fourth set.”
On the fourth set improvement….”I thought we were in a strong serve and pass mindset. We kept the ball on them. Ema had an ace or two and kept them really, really guessing from our service line.”
On Haley Moss’s aggressiveness…. “Brent (Zomer), Riley (Morris) and Kristin (Brouwer) said the left side blockers for Corban are an area we really need to attack and for Haley to be available there Jamie was putting Haley in some good scoring positions and it was fun to Haley add some offensive power.”