Ogallala downs Gering volleyball

The Gering volleyball team fought hard, but dropped a 3-set match to Ogallala on Tuesday night at the Holliday Family Companies Dome 25-15, 25-17 and 25-22.

Gering head coach Amanda Cochran said they fought, but too many errors cost the Bulldogs the win.

“I think we played tough, just not smart enough,” Cochran said. “On a lot of plays we had opportunities to find open shots, but we were a little lax in the front row. We weren’t super-aggressive tonight.”

After dropping the first two sets, Gering looked as if they were going to capture the third set. Cochran said the third set was definitely their best.

“They played with a lot of heart in the third set,” she said. “We just didn’t have enough fire power swinging away in the front row.”

Gering doubled up Ogallala in the third set, leading 6-3 on an Elli Winkler kill and block. Gering pushed the lead to 12-9 on two Kennie McFarland service points and a Winkler kill. Ogallala came back to tie it at 12 on two Elyce Talevera points.

Gering fought back on two Zoee Smith points at 16-13 and led 20-18 late. Ogallala came back to grab a 21-20 lead on two Gabby Caskey points. The score was tied at 21-21 before a kill from Jaedy Commins and then two points from Talevera put the Indians up 24-21 before Ogallala won 25-22.

Gering started strong in the first two sets. Gering was tied 3-3 in the first set before Ogallala started to flex its muscles, leading 11-5 and later 16-7. The Indians closed out the first set as Makayla Kirchner served the final four points for the 25-15 win.

Macey Boggs started the Bulldogs off on a good foot in the second set with three points and a 4-0 lead. Gering led 7-4 and 8-6 before Kirchner went on a, 8-point service run that included four aces for a 15-8 lead.

Gering tried coming back, cutting the lead to 20-15, but Jenna Curtis served the final two points for the 25-17 win.

Boggs had a double-double in the match with 15 digs and 13 set assists. Smith finished with 17 digs in the match.

Gering only had 14 kills in the match. Winkler led the way with nine followed by Emily Harrison with two.

While Gering had 15 blocking errors, they also had four solo blocks. Winkler and Carleigh Pszanka each had two.

Gering will next be in action at the Twin City Invite Friday and Saturday. Cochran said the invite will be tough.

“It is a tough tournament,” she said. “We are looking forward to two tough days of volleyball.”

There are 16 teams in the tournament with four divisions of pool play on Friday. Gering’s in the Blue Pool along with Lexington, Rapid City Central and Chadron. All four pools will be at 3 p.m. Gering is slated to play Lexington in the second match followed by Chadron in the third match of the day. The Bulldogs will wrap up pool play against Rapid City Central in the fifth match.

Cochran said they have to play well at the net, especially on the defensive end.

“We have to clean up our side of the net. We had 15 blocking errors tonight and that is really, really big numbers,” she said. “We have to make sure we are sealing at the net and making the block our first line of defense.”

Cochran said they can’t duplicate their play at the net Tuesday night when tournament action begins on Friday.

“They did fight hard and showed a lot of heart and grit {tonight],” she said. “They played really good defense and touched a lot of balls. We just had too many seams open in the front row.”

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