(Sugar Grove, IL.) - As the old adage says, 'if at first you don't succeed, try, try again.' And in some cases you just have to try again, and again, and again. Waubonsee Community College's women's volleyball team finally got past an old nemesis. In their final match on day two of the Chiefs' Crossover Tournament, Waubonsee rallied to down Sauk Valley Community College in four games. The Chiefs' victory snaps a 10-match losing streak to the Skyhawks that dates back to 2013. Sauk Valley, which began the season ranked 10th nationally in the NJCAA's Division II Pre-season poll after winning the Region IV title the last four years, fell to an uncharacteristic 8-10 overall with the loss. Waubonsee, which seemed to get stronger as the match progressed, improves to 13-4 overall with the victory.
Game one was close throughout with neither team ever having more than a three point lead. Tied at 19-all Waubonsee's Anna Friedlund smacked an emphatic kill to put the Chiefs in front. Emma King followed with a kill down the left sideline and Natalie Jones scored on a nice touch shot to make it 22-19. However, Sauk Valley responded with three quick points to tie it again. An intense volley moments later was won by the Skyhawks when a return shot hit the net and trickled over the top catching the Chiefs off guard and giving the visitors a 24-22 lead. The Chiefs came back to tie it at 24 after two Sauk Valley shots sailed out of bounds. But the Skyhawks tallied the next two points, winning the game on a block to get the upper hand in the match.
In game two each time the Chiefs were able to take a small lead the Skyhawks answered to tie it. The game was knotted at 16 when Jones took over and sparked the Chiefs' offense. The sophomore setter placed two passing shots perfectly in open spots on the Skyhawks side of the floor to put Waubonsee in front 18-16. Moments later she had a key block for another point to make it 20-17. Jones then placed another touch shot perfectly to give the Chiefs a 23-18 lead. A Skyhawks' miscue resulted in game point for a 25-19 Waubonsee win to even the match.
Game three Waubonsee took control early and held onto it as Sauk Valley began to show signs of fatigue. Kayla Battle took command smacking a couple big kills as the Chiefs scored the first six points. Another power slam, a block, and another kill by Battle staked Waubonsee to an 11-7 lead. Kendall Iversen and Sidney Fedor each served up aces as the Chiefs surged ahead 18-11. Sauk Valley rebounded with four straight points, but Waubonsee kept them at arm's length the rest of the game. Fedor finished off the Chiefs' 25-20 win with kill in the middle of the floor to give Waubonsee a two games to one advantage.
The fourth game Waubonsee again was able to garner small leads early on, but Sauk Valley responded each time. The Chiefs trailed 11-10 when Jones scored on another spot shot to tie it. The Aurora West High School product then took over duties serving and Waubonsee booked the next six points to go ahead 17-11. Later on the Chiefs won a long volley to grab a 19-14 lead and used that springboard to victory. A moment later Fedor scored on an tremendous spike and the Chiefs carried that momentum to a 25-18 win.
For the match Jones tallied 14 kills, 32 assists and three serving aces to pace Waubonsee. Fedor finished with 12 kills and 15 digs, while Battle contributed nine kills and five solo blocks. King chipped in with eight kills, Friedlund had seven kills and five aces, and Iversen ended with 30 digs.