Muskies Earn Third Straight trip to NCAA Tournament
Athletics - posted on 11/6/2004
The Lakeland College volleyball team rallied from a two-game deficit in the championship match of the Lake Michigan Conference Tournament and beat rival Wisconsin Lutheran Saturday night at Lakeland to earn the program’s third straight trip to the NCAA Division III National Tournament.
The Muskies, now 25-13, will learn their NCAA Tournament opponent and location Sunday night.
After losing the first game 30-21, the Muskies had a 24-16 lead in the second game before dropping the game 30-25 and digging themselves a big hole.
But Lakeland rallied, winning the final three games 30-21, 30-19 and 15-6 – the winning point coming on a service ace from senior Resi Ertler.
“We didn’t establish the right-side block until the third game,” said Lakeland head coach Chad Schreiber. “We stopped giving away points on hitting errors and service errors. We said coming in they were a good team, but not good enough to score 30 on us unless we were giving them 15 points on our mistakes.”
This was the third time the Muskies and Warriors met this season – Lakeland won the opener 30-23, 24-30, 30-26, 30-26 and WLC won the second matchup 30-19, 30-27, 32-30, which snapped Lakeland’s two-plus year conference win streak.
Lakeland won the LMC regular season title this season, its fourth straight.
“I was a little nervous,” Ertler admitted after the match. “We were playing not to lose. Chad told everyone after the second game to fix one thing. This was a lot harder than (the LMC Tournament final) last year, but I felt we earned it. They made us work hard.”
Junior right side hitter Heather Heberlein finished with 20 kills, 14 in the last three games. Ertler had 11 kills and Leeann Hupfer added 10. Junior setter Lana Neuman had 48 assists, 19 digs and four blocks.
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