DCCC Volleyball: Conqs Fall to Barton in Hard Fought Four Set Match
The Dodge City Community College Conquistadors gave the Barton Cougars all they wanted Thursday night in the Student Activity Center before the Cougars bested them 3-1.
The Conquistadors took the first set in a 28-26 marathon. Barton ripped away a Conquistador chance at a 2-0 lead by winning set two 27-25. They cook control of the match with a 25-22 set three victory and closed out the match with a dominant 25-13 set four performance.
Set one saw Barton control much of the action before a late Conquistador run secured their comeback victory.
Barton led by at least three most of the set before Dodge City was able to cut their lead to 18-17. The Cougars responded with a 4-0 run to go up 22-17, leading to a Dodge City timeout. Out of the timeout, the Conquistadors began making their push, pulling within one at 23-22 after a Ruby Osawey block. A Barton error allowed the Conquistadors to tie and Abby Francis gave the Conqs a 24-23 lead with a kill. Barton took a 26-25 lead but gave the point right back on a service error.
An Aneesa Thompson block party closed out the set for the Conquistadors as she connected with Maria Alcantara to give the Conqs a 27-26 lead and then Hillary English on the very next serve to win the set 28-26.
The Conquistadors closed set one on a 11-4 run, fending off Barton's set point at 25-24 and 26-25 in the process.
The early stages of set two were back and forth before Barton used a 5-1 run to take a 14-9 lead. The Conquistadors battled back to pull within one at 20-19 after a Ruby Osawey kill and again at 22-21 after an Abby Francis kill before they were able to tie the set at 23-23. The Conqs tied it again at 24 after a Hillary English kill and again at 25 after a Barton service error. The Cougars were able to recover with two straight points to take a 27-25 victory.
Set three featured nine ties and seven lead changes in a back and forth affair. Barton broke free to take a 22-19 lead late, but an Aneesa Thompson block and a Barton error allowed the Conqs to tie the score right back at 22-22. Barton responded with two monster kills that led to a Conquistador timeout. Dodge City was unable to mount a comeback as Barton won the set 25-22 the very next serve.
The Cougars really took control of the match in set four, racing out to a 5-0 lead and then a 10-2 lead. The Conquistadors were able to pull within seven points twice after the initial Barton onslaught, the last time being at 20-13. Barton responded with a 5-0 spurt to close out the set 25-13, winning the match 3-1.
"We keep competing with the top teams in our conference and falling short. Barton is always a fun team to play and I think we match up very well with them," said head coach Jordan Bruere.
"We knew we needed to set up solid blocks tonight to slow down their pin hitters, and for the first three sets we did that very well. What held us back tonight was our serve-receive. It wasn't consistent enough to spread our offense and it forced us to go back to back to our outside hitters, allowing Barton to set up a solid block in the fourth set. We truly keep getting more consistent every tie we play. We pushed ourselves into a playoff seed and we are excited for whoever gets in front of us next."
After a tremendous career as a Conquistador, it was only fitting that Ruby Osawey led the Conquistadors in kills on sophomore night with 18.
Hillary English, who sits at 4th nationally in kills, followed Osawey with 15 to go with her 15 digs.
Bruna Torres recorded her third 30-dig match in her last four outings with her 30 digs on the night to lead the Conqs.
Aneesa Thompson led the Conquistadors with eight blocks on the night, all of which came at crucial moments for the Conqs.
Dodge City ends their regular season at 8-15 overall and 5-11 in the KJCCC, good for 7th in the upcoming KJCCC tournament. Barton remains atop the KJCCC standings at 14-1 in the conference. They play the Seward County Saints for the KJCCC West Championship tonight.
Dodge City will take on the loser of that match at their place on Tuesday, March 30 at 6:30 p.m. in the first round of the KJCCC tournament.