ELDON – The SEISC mid-season volleyball tournament split into four five-team pools. Each pool was hosted at a different site. After Thursday’s action, Winfield-Mount Union and Iowa Mennonite advanced to the championship bracket.
Site host school Cardinal joined Van Buren as each team advanced to the consolation bracket. The tournament will be held today at the Loren Walker Arena on the campus of Southeastern Community College in West Burlington on Saturday.
The atmosphere at Cardinal high school Thursday night was typical of tournament play. For much of the night, there wasn't a seat to be found and the crowds from each school were loud and supportive. That led to some really good volleyball action. The match most important to Courier area fans was the one between Cardinal and Van Buren. The Comets downed the Warriors 2-1 in the match that made the difference between the number three and four seeds. Van Buren opened the match with a 21-13 win in game one. The game was close until the midpoint when the Warriors took control. Two kills by Alicia Fitzsimmons helped the Warriors lead 13-8. She then helped Van Buren stretch the margin, with a four-point service run, to lead 18-10. Dakota Durflinger, who led the Comets’ opening-game attack, going 12-14, had a kill to keep Cardinal within 19-12. A perfectly placed shot that found the floor by Grace Thomas gave the Warriors a 20-13 lead. They closed out game one on the next serve. A close game two went to Cardinal 21-19. The Warriors led 4-3 when Leea Ostrander used a down line kill to tie it at four. The kill was the first point in a four-point run of serves by Schylar Conger for a 7-4 Comet lead. Van Buren had one more lead at 8-6. Cardinal built a 16-10 lead after Katey Liles finished off her streak of four serves. Van Buren fought back to tie game two again at 18. At the end of Aletha Wenke’s three serves, Nicole Coffin’s deep kill tied it. Amy Hart gave the Comets the win with a down line kill. Cardinal raced out to an 8-0 lead behind the serving of Danae Moses. Her run of eight service points included an ace. Coffin took the serve with her team trailing 8-1, but when she lost the serve, the Warriors were only down 8-7. “That was a chance for us to put them away,” said Cardinal Coach Jerald Harter. “We have struggled with maintaining a consistent level of play.”