DC Goes 1-1 on First Day of DC Invitational
DEFIANCE, Ohio – Defiance College split a pair of matches on the opening day of the 2010 DC Invitational on Friday afternoon. The Yellow Jackets fell in four sets to Concordia to begin play, before rebounding to pull out a hard-fought, five-set affair against Manchester.
The Yellow Jackets got off to a sluggish start in the opening match of the day, registering just 16 kills in the first two sets. The poor start put Defiance in a 2-0 deficit, after Concordia won 25-23 and 25-17 in the opening two sets.
Marlea Rolander would eventually ignite the DC attack, as the junior middle blocker ended the match with 17 kills in only 28 swings for a blistering .536 clip and added four blocks and an ace. Chelsea Ludeman joined Rolander among the team leaders with 11 kills, nine digs and one ace and Kelsey Ferguson tossed up 24 assists to go with a trio of aces.
The strong individual showings were not enough to fuel a comeback victory however, as the Cardinals rebounded from a 25-14 Defiance victory in the third set to pull out a 29-27 win in the fourth and final set.
In the second match of the day, DC locked horns with Manchester for a five-set clash. The Spartans drew first blood with a 25-22 opening-set victory, before Defiance answered with 25-23 and 25-22 wins to take a 2-1 lead.
The Jacket offense derailed in the fourth set and allowed MC to force a decisive fifth set with a 25-14 win. DC managed just seven kills and hit eight miscues in the fourth set but turned things around in the clincher.
Rolander, Ludeman, Jessica Tietje and Julie Brunsman did most of the damage, as the group swatted 12 kills while posting a collective attack percentage of .500. The offensive surge was more than enough for the Jackets, who rolled to the 15-11 victory to secure their first win of the 2010 campaign.
Ludeman led all players with 19 kills, while Rolander and Tietje also ended in double figures with 13 and 11 respectively. Ferguson registered a double-double with 28 assists and 11 digs and Ashlyn Howell narrowly missed accomplishing the same feat with eight kills and a match-high 20 digs.
Defiance will play IU-East on Saturday at 11:00 am in the final match of pool play. The Jackets will then compete at either 1:00 pm or 3:00 pm in the championship round.