NORTHROP - The Adrian Dragons spoiled the 2012 home opener for the Martin Luther/Granada-Huntley-East Chain Knights, sweeping the three-game match, 25-20, 27-25, 25-20.
Despite stellar serving from Myranda Quinn in Game 1, the Knights lost 25-20.
After dropping the first game, the Knights fought hard in the second game to get back into the match.
TIP-TOP?PLAY — Knights’ hitter Amanda Cegelske (3) sails above the net to tip a pass from Samantha Meade (left) for a point during volleyball action Monday night in Northrop. Adrian’s Bailey Grussing looks on. Photo by Leanna Becker
The teams traded points early on in Game 2, but the Knights still trailed 23-19.
ML/GHEC senior middle hitter Amanda Cegelske drove three sets from Hunter Payne to the floor to get the Knights within two.
Despite the Knights' efforts to tie the game at 25-25, the Dragons' Courtney Vaske sent the game-winning shot to the floor for the 27-25 win, sending the match to Game 3.
"We played really hard tonight in the match. Adrian is a good team, but it is hard to be upset when the girls play so hard from beginning to end," said ML/GHEC head coach Leslie Wokasch.
Adrian rebounded from the close second game to open with a big lead in the third game.
The Dragons, aided by Vaske's swing from the left side of the net, built a 16-6 lead to try and close out the game and match.
Payne, the Knight setter, recorded 25 set assists and did her best to keep the team in the match at the end.
"She had some really big serves at the end of the second and third game. In those tough situations, it can be tough to serve, let alone serve aggressively and she did," said Wokasch.
The final point proved to be one of the match bests.
With the Knights mounting a comeback, the home team inched within 24-20.
Both teams traded possessions, and with tremendous digs by Payne, Quinn and Amber Schulz, the Knights were able to keep the point alive.
Adrian's Corie Reckamp ended the point and the match with a hard swing from the left side for the Dragon win.
"There are so many scenarios that happen in a volleyball game that are so different. The best way to practice that is just by competing in the games themselves," said Wokasch. "Today we worked hard and we know we can work on things, but the game experience is really going to help."
Cegelske led the Knights with 13 kills, while Samantha Meade recorded 10.
Payne added 14 digs to her set assists, while libero Effie Bentz had 12 digs in the loss.
Martin Luther/GHEC (0-1) hosts Sleepy Eye St. Mary's at 7:30 p.m. tonight in Northrop.