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Warriors struggle at home tournament

Staff writer

Marion’s home volleyball tournament was the scene of high-level competition. Unfortunately for the hosts, they were not the primary recipients.

The Warriors played well and even looked dominant at times, but they couldn’t stand up to the onslaught that came from the south.

The first indication of trouble was during the third match of pool play. The Warriors were smaller and much less experienced than the Douglass Bulldogs. Marion repeatedly came up against a wall of blockers on the attack and was repeatedly turned away.

Every member of the Bulldogs starting rotation was an upperclassman. The difference in experience showed as they beat Marion in two sets, by 15 points and 10 points

Marion habitually gets out to a slow start. While their first match, against Lyons, indicated that would be a problem, the Warriors showed they were superior. Despite going down by 10, they gradually closed the gap, before losing the first set 22-25.

After winning the following two sets against Lyons, the Warriors turned in a dominant performance against the Wichita Defenders.

Chisolm Waner came back strong from the previous week’s injury, putting up five kills, three aces, and two digs in the first set alone.

A major positive for the Warriors was libero Jayden May, who made the all-tournament team. In addition to her usual receiving duties, she took a more active role in the offense. Against Lyons, Jayden aced four serves and had a kill off a back row spike.

“If Jayden can take that first pass, we want her to take that first pass,” coach Kris Burkholder said. “We need to do more back row attacks too. We were working on that in practice.”

Following the loss to Douglass, Marion faced the Halstead Dargons, who proved to be another wall that was too high. One of the new struggles for Marion was the quick set.

“We saw that a lot more today,” Burkholder said. “We just haven’t played against teams who have done that.”

The Warriors’ most competitive match was for third-place against the Eureka Tornadoes. It was a back-and-forth contest throughout. The Tornadoes opened a big lead in the first set, going up 22-15.

Marion pulled within two, but ended up losing the set 23-25.

It was a good statistical match for match for the hosts. Lilly Lundy, Tori Shults, Corrina Crabb, Chisolm, and Jayden each had at least two blocks. Laura Savage registered three blocks, and Tori led the way for the Warriors with five in the match.

Despite the solid distribution of stats, they couldn’t close the second set either, and lost in two.

Last modified Sept. 19, 2018

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