Patrick Hiltz continues to stress gradual improvement to his Garden City Community College volleyball team. And Saturday, was yet another day where the Broncbusters did just that.
Katarina Vojvodic led the way with 32 kills, and Garden City split their two matches on Saturday, beating Lamar in four sets (18-25, 25-14, 25-20, 25-18) before falling to Clarendon in three (20-25, 17-25, 15-25).
"It was good to get another win, but in the Clarendon match, we got off to a very poor start," Hiltz said. "It amazes me, after all the years coaching volleyball, that we can go from having so much confidence in one match; then turn around and seemingly look lost in another."
After dropping the first set in the opening match vs. Lamar, Sheridan Rodriguez jump started the Broncbusters in the second stanza with a kill that put Garden City up 9-7. Vojvodic followed with her own kill, and the Broncbusters finished off a 13-8 run that had them up by five. They stretched that to as many as 10 on Tameia Davis's kill, which gave GCCC the set.
"We did a lot of good things in the first match," Hiltz added.
In the third set, Garden City climbed out of an early three-point hole by using a 6-3 surge to take a 10-7 advantage. That run continued, with the Broncbusters scoring seven of the next 10 points. Back-to-back Lamar errors gave Garden City a 17-10 cushion. A Summer Nerkowski kill and another miscue by the Lopes, ended the set.
In the fourth and deciding set, the Broncbusters took control from the start, scoring the first five points, and never looking back. It was one of their most dominant stretches of the season.
The second match was a different story.
Clarendon raced out to a six-point advantage in the first set, thanks in large part to a couple of hitting errors by Garden City. The Broncbusters though made a run to get back in the frame, cutting the deficit to two, 20-18 on a Bulldog service error. But that was as close as Garden City got as Clarendon scored five of the final seven points to take a 1-0 lead in the match.
"After we got off to a really poor start, we never really recovered," Hiltz said. "But give Clarendon credit, they made plays and kept the pressure on us the whole match. We didn't respond very well."
The Bulldogs scored the first four points in the second set, and were up 11-4 when the Broncbusters called a timeout. A hitting error by Garden City, stretched the Clarendon lead to 18-9, their largest advantage of the set. In the final set, the Broncbusters fell down again before tying things up at 7. But a 10-2 Clarendon run all but put the match away.