Hastings, NE -- The Hastings College volleyball team had not beaten a team ranked in the Top 25 since defeating then No. 22 Doane back on Sept. 5 in straight sets. The Broncos had everything working on senior night defeating the No. 11 Midland Warriors 25-22, 25-19, 20-25, 25-13 Wednesday night in Lynn Farrell Arena.
It was quite the send off the this senior class and Sage Meyer wanted to make sure her senior night would end on a winning note. She tallied 10 kills while hitting .651 in set one to help Hastings win set one 25-22.
Tied 7-7 in set one Meyer along with fellow senior Matti Dabovich picked up two kills each as the Broncos rang off five straight points to push the lead to 12-7.
After Midland fought all the way back to take a 20-19 lead, Meyer went right back to work recording three straight kills off of Clare Hamburger assists to force a Warrior timeout up 22-20.
"When we're just having fun flying around out there, playing the game we love, we do what we need to do. We did that tonight for sure," Meyer said about the win.
Set two had three bench marks for the Broncos as the first came after Hastings fell behind 5-2. Hamburger first caught the Warriors sleeping faking a set and slipping her shot into the middle of the defense for the kill.
After an attack error by Midland, Hamburger then found Emily Lenners for the kill and then went right back to Meyer to push HC into the lead at 6-5. After another Midland attack error, the Warriors took a timeout as all the momentum shifted to the Broncos.
Things would stay tight for the Broncos and Midland as Hastings led 14-12 leading to bench mark No. 2 when Lenners would team up with Ally Ginkens and Dabovich on back-to-back blocks to give Hastings a 16-12 lead in set two.
The third mark was when Hastings took complete control of the set after a service error from Taylor Petersen gave Hastings the 20-16 lead. Claire Thede stepped in and picked up a service ace followed by a Meyer and Emily Krolikowski block to make it 22-16. Another attack error by the Warriors followed by Thede's second service ace pushed the lead to 24-16 as Hastings went on to win set two 25-19.
After dropping set three, Hastings came out of the gates strong in set four opening up a 7-1 lead and never looked back.
Head Coach Matt Buttermore talked about how big this win was for Hastings, "Tonight was important for a log of things," Buttermore said. "National Tournament seeding, hopefully solidifying our spot in the group that qualifies straight to Sioux City, and we also hadn't had a win against a ranked team since really early on, so I think tonight was really important for our confidence."
Meyer matched her career high with a match high 23 kills while hitting .447. Dabovich added 12 kills hitting .458. Lucy Skoch added nine kills and Ginkens finished the night with seven kills.
Hamburger led Hastings with 29 assists while Meyer, Cassidy Ostrand and Casey Krolikowski combined for 41 digs to lead the Broncos. Thede and Hamburger each had three service aces in the win.
Hastings improves to 18-5 (13-3) on the year and earns the No. 3 seed in the Great Plains Athletic Conference Tournament and will host No. 6 seed Morningside Saturday Nov. 3 with first serve set for 7:00 p.m. in Lynn Farrell Arena.
GPAC Volleyball Quarterfinals – Saturday, November 3
Records listed as (Overall, GPAC)
#8 Concordia (15-11, 5-11) at #1 Dordt (24-2, 16-0), 7pm
#5 Jamestown (21-7, 10-6) at #4 Midland (21-5, 13-3), 7pm
#6 Morningside (13-13, 7-9) at #3 Hastings (18-5, 13-3), 7pm
#7 Doane (13-16, 5-11) at #2 Northwestern (22-6, 13-3), 7pm
GPAC Volleyball Semifinals – Wednesday, November 7
Highest Seed Hosts
#4/#5 Winner vs. #1/#8 Winner, 7pm
#3/#6 Winner vs. #2/#7 Winner, 7pm
GPAC Volleyball Championship - Saturday, November 10
Semifinal Winners, At Highest Seed, 7pm