St. Bede coach Dawn Williams knew it wasn’t good news leading into Tuesday’s match at Princeton when she learned Monday morning that senior setter Morgan Bosnich was experiencing concussion symptoms as the result of a run-in with the scorer’s table during Saturday’s tournament at St. Bede.
After dropping the first set Tuesday to host Princeton 25-15, the Lady Bruins recovered nicely to take the second set 25-21. Ultimately, the Tigresses claimed the third set and ultimately the match at 25-13.
“I’m proud of my team for playing without our No. 1 setter and figuring out a lineup at 9:15 a.m. (Monday) morning,” she said. “We were kind of adjusting all night long. The second game we put it together and took advantage of things clicking. Third game things weren’t clicking. That’s how volleyball goes sometimes. When things click you roll with the tide and when it isn’t clicking you readjust and try again and just keep going.”
Wiliams said she thought Bosnich only hit her shoulder Saturday morning and being a tough kid, said she was OK. But then Monday morning, Williams said Bosnich told her, she still had fuzzy vision.
Sophomore Sadie Long and junior Madison Billhorn shared the setting duties in Bosnich’s absence.
The match was the first in Three Rivers Conference play between the two former NCIC rivals.
Princeton had things clicking late in the first set. Down 9-7 in the first set, the Tigresses sided out and senior libero Mollie Bates, served a five-point string to give PHS a 13-9 lead. Becca Hult also served for five straight including an ace to run the Tigresses to a 23-13 lead. Hailey Schultz hit through two blockers for game point at 25-15.
St. Bede got off to a 9-5 lead in the second set, but PHS tied things up at 9 on a kill by Poss and took a 14-12 lead on a stuff block by Becca Hult. A service error by Princeton gave St. Bede a lead it would not surrender at 18-17 with Olivia Mueller hitting for the game winner at 25-21.
“I was pleased with our girls stepping up blocking. We got a lot of hands on the ball. Olivia Mueller and Hanna Bima had a lot of good hits in there,” Williams said.
“They served us off the court that second set. We couldn’t get into any systems. our confidence was shaky, They pushed us and that was all them. That was everything they did to us,” Puck said. “But I tell our kids all the time worry about what happens to our side of the net, if we take care of things on our side of the net and we’ll be fine. Little by little by title, we did that. Third set we definitely did that.”
The Tigresses (2-0, 1-0) regained control of the match in game 3, using another high five from Bates, who had a team-high 11 points, to go up 11-4. A kill by Hult made it 14-6 and a blast by Poss put the Tigresses on the way to victory at 20-10.
“We played well when we had to,” Puck said. “Good team pushed us back and fourth. Second (game), you’re going to have your roller-coaster runs, your peaks and valleys, but I think we’re learning about each other and they’re learning about me. We ended up winning. It’s a win. I was confident going into that third set we’d be OK.”
Puck said the Tigresses simply attacked better in the third set.
“When you do that, you play hard and you don’t think, and when you don’t think you think you react,” he said. “Playing hard and attacking takes care of things. And our back row definitely cleaned up. Our serve receive was a lot better that third set.”
Senior Ashley Farraher led PHS with 11 kills and six digs. Poss had 10 kills and setter Michelle Kelly 32 assists.
For St. Bede (3-4, 0-1), Mueller had 11 kills and Bima added seven. Morgan King and Samantha Whalen each had 18 digs and Billhorn paced the Lady Bruins with seven points.
Notes: St.Bede claimed both underclass matches,winning at the freshmen level 25-21, 25-23 as well as the sophomores 25-15, 24-26, 25-13. ... St. Bede travels to Sterling Newman Thursday night. PHS returns to action Saturday at the Rock Falls Invite, drawing Morrison, Bureau Valley and host Lady Rockets in pool play.