Dordt def. Northwestern 3-2 (26-28, 18-25, 25-23, 25-18, 15-12)
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Dordt College Defender volleyball team secured the outright Great Plains Athletic Conference regular season championship with a 3-2 come from behind win over Northwestern on Wednesday night, October 23.
The Defenders overcame a 2-0 deficit in winning its 15th GPAC match in a row to start the conference season.
Dordt was in command of set one and built a 20-13 lead after a Leah Kamp kill to finish a six point run. Just as quickly the hosts put together a four point string to get within striking distance at 20-17. Dordt was still up 23-19 after a Lydia Smits kill but the Defenders gave up a four point run before Jamie De Jager gave the Defenders a 24-23 lead and serve for set point. Northwestern tied it at 24 and it was tied again at 25. Northwestern scored back to back points to got up 26-25 but Ema Altena’s kill made it 26 all. Northwestern then scored on a kill by Lauryn Hilger and an attack error by Dordt gave the hosts the come from behind win 28-26.
Northwestern controlled much of set two and led 16-11 before Dordt scored four in a row, capping the run with a Jessi De Jager block to make it 16-15. Dordt never completed the comeback and allowed four points in a row to trail 21-16 and lost the set 25-18 on a Dordt attack error.
The two teams battled to six ties in set three up to 18-18. Leah Kamp unlocked the tie with a kill and Dordt didn’t trail again maintaining a one or two point lead the rest of the way and winning the set on an attack error by Northwestern that just missed the back line.
Set four was close as well with ten ties to 14-14. An attack error by Northwestern started a run for Dordt that didn’t end until 18-14 with Smits getting another kill to cap the run. Northwestern was unable to mount a serious threat in the set and lost 25-18 with the final point coming on an attack error.
The teams were tied 2-2 in set five when Ema Altena recorded three service aces in a row for a 5-2 lead and Dordt never relinquished the lead. Northwestern did manage to tie it at 10-10 but back to back kills by Altena put Dordt up 12-10 and an attack error by Northwestern gave Dordt three points for cushion and Altena finished it with a kill to complete the comeback.
Dordt had a 65-64 kills advantage and a 10-9 points on blocks edge.
Northwestern hit for a .247 kill efficiency while Dordt was .201.
Dordt had a 10-3 service ace edge and committed three service errors to eight errors by the hosts.
Altena led Dordt with 18 kills, five service aces and 11 digs and she was in on three blocks.
Jessi De Jager and Julia Lindbergh had 12 kills each and De Jager had three solo blocks.
Leah Kamp and Lydia Smits each had ten kills. Kamp was in on five blocks.
Aubrey Drake had 19 digs and an ace and Erica Bousema had 12 digs and two aces.
Jamie De Jager put up 53 assists and had two aces with seven digs.
Dordt had 17 kills in both set three and set four.
Dordt has a two match lead with one match to play in GPAC action. Dordt will host Dakota Wesleyan in a senior day match at the DeWitt Gym on Saturday beginning at 5:00.
COACH HANSON SAID
“We finished out with ten kills and three errors in set five. That focus and that tenacity, that resilience against a very worthy and talented Northwestern team makes me really excited. The other matches we’ve had in our pre-conference schedule, especially against Grand View prepared us well for this night.”