-Article by Josh Sandin of Iowa Central Community College
TOLEDO, Ohio - The sixth-ranked Iowa Central volleyball team got some strong tests this weekend as it went 1-3 at the Owens Invitational hosted by Owens CC in Toledo, Ohio. The Tritons’ schedule was unforgiving as it faced three teams ranked in the NJCAA Top-15.
Iowa Central (4-5 overall) opened on Friday against tournament host and fifteenth-ranked Owens. After dominating the first two games 25-9 and 25-22, Owens rallied to tie the match with 25-23, 25-22 wins and won the match in the fifth game 15-7. Alicia Moreno had 20 kills and 20 digs in the match. Gabi Reyes had 46 assists and 15 digs.
The Tritons’ second match Friday didn’t start too hot as Vincennes took the opening game 25-21. But the Tritons rallied to win the final three games 25-23, 25-23 and 25-21. Nadia Morneau led the charge with 19 kills, 17 digs, two blocks and two block assists. Brittany Vaske also had 19 kills. Reyes etched her name into the record book as she dished out 60 assists, which is tied for the third most in school history.
The momentum looked to carry into Saturday as Iowa Central won the opening two games against No. 3 Kishwaukee and seemed primed for a sweep late. However, Kishwaukee rallied for a 25-23 win in game three and dominated game four to tie the match with a 25-14 win. A deflated Triton squad dropped the fifth game 15-11. Moreno had 17 kills and Vaske had 11.
The hangover continued into Iowa Central’s final match against No. 9 Grand Rapids. The Raiders rolled to a 25-21, 25-21, 25-23 sweep of the Tritons. Morneau had 13 kills and Moreno had 24 digs.
Iowa Central returns to action on Tuesday, Sept. 4, when it travels to Ottumwa to face Indian Hills at 6:30 p.m.