Hutchinson CC Sports Information
The Hutchinson Community College volleyball team had its moments – both good and bad – on Saturday in the final two matches of the Allen Samuels/Blue Dragon Volleyball Classic at the Sports Arena.
But Hutchinson came away with a pair of losses – to No. 14 Mineral Area in three sets and Northeastern Junior College in five tough sets – to finish the weekend 1-3.
Mineral Area won the final two sets on Saturday morning, defeated the Blue Dragons 27-25, 25-17, 25-19. The Dragons had to win the fourth set to force a fifth against NJC and led 12-11, but the Plainsmen scored the final four points of the match to defeat Hutchinson 21-25, 25-18, 25-21, 23-25, 15-12.
Hutchinson falls to 7-8 overall. The Blue Dragons return to conference play on Monday at Independence before traveling to Tyler, Texas, to play in the TJC Classic.
Sophomore Elena Takova hit .372 on 18 kills and the Blue Dragons racked up 13 total blocks, but that wasn't enough to offset four Plainsmen hitters in double figures led by Sara Antic's match-high 20 kills.
Tied at 23 in the fourth set, Chloe Partridge had a kill and NJC was called for a net violation to close out the fourth set. The Dragons trailed by as many as three points five times in the fifth set. Hutch took its first lead in the fifth on a Baylee Beck ace serve, followed by a Partridge solo block to give the Dragons a 12-11 lead.
The final four rallies were tough for the Dragons as a service error and attack error gave NJC a 13-12 lead. Then Sofija Pajevic dropped back-to-back ace serves right on the end line to close out the match.
Takova got her weekend-high 18 kills on 43 swings and only two errors. Hogan finished with nine kills and Partridge had six kills. NJC countered with four players with a combined 55 kills led by Antic's 20.
Partridge had a season-high nine block assists as Hutch racked up 13 team blocks in the match. Cassidy Crites had a solo and four block assists. Eden Hiebert had four block assists. Hogan had three block assists.
Crites posted her fourth double-double of the season with 23 assists. Ebony Sapien had nine.
The Blue Dragons are now 0-3 in five-set matches this season and have dropped seven-straight five setters going back to 2017.
Earlier on Saturday, the Dragons couldn't muster consistent offense and gave up four runs of four or more points as No. 14 Mineral Area bounced back from its first loss of the season to sweep the Blue Dragons.
Takova had seven of her 11 kills in a tight first set and hit .300 for the match to lead Hutchinson. Hiebert and Partridge finished with seven kills each.
Reed had 22 digs for the Dragons and Hiebert added nine digs. Crites had 15 assists and Sapien had 10.
Hutch had just five blocks and five aces in the match. Mineral Area finished with seven blocks and seven aces.