By Chris Umscheid
North Liberty Leader
SOLON– But for one game, the 2011 season opener last Thursday night pitting the Lady Spartans against the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) Clippers would’ve been perfect.
Solon’s freshmen won 25-22 and 25-22, the sophomores won 25-17 and 25-9; and the JV squad prevailed 25-21 and 25-12. The marquee match-up put the varsity squads in action with Solon reigning 3-1.
In game one, the Clippers came back from a 3-2 deficit to take a 7-3 lead, prompting Solon coach Kurt Trout to call a timeout. The Clippers thanked Trout for the break by scoring again for an 8-3 lead. Solon charged back to tie the game and later take the lead. The Lady Spartans’ momentum continued, and the 25-19 win went to the home team.
The Clippers put up the first point in game two, and Solon’s Kelsey Cave tied it with a kill. With Solon up 5-4, Maliah Fligg tied the game on a kill. Again the Spartans pulled away, taking a 9-5 lead before Tara Walls got CCA back on the board with a kill. Solon’s lead stretched to nine points at times as the game ended 25-16 to the ladies in black.
Solon got on the board with the first two points of the third game, but the Clippers steamed ahead to a 6-4 lead. A 10-6 lead meant another Solon timeout. Amy Kalkhoff made a kill good for a 12-6 CCA lead. A short Solon rally ensued, but the Clippers kept their lead and built onto it, leading 17-10 at one point. With the score at 24-16, the bewildered Lady Spartans again took some time to talk things over. The Clippers enjoyed some jubilation with their 25-18 win, buying a fourth game in the process.
A slim early CCA lead in the fourth and final game quickly eroded as Solon charged ahead 13-7 leading Bronzynski to take a timeout. The Lady Spartans took a 10-point lead, 20-10, but the Clippers once again came sailing back at full throttle, narrowing the gap to 23-19. Trout took another timeout, and devised a strategy which held the Clippers, and paved the way to the final two points of the night.
“This was a very tough match to open up with,” Bronzynski said, “as it was last year as well. Honestly, it’s just a non-conference crossover match that was a good measuring stick for our progress.”
The coach said his crew is ahead of where they were last year at this time while continuing to seek improve. “If we can stay healthy and avoid injuries, we should be right in the hunt for conference and regional championships,” he noted.