Broncbusters fall to Hutch in four sets

GCCC Sports Information Services
Garden City Community College's Alli Meng, center, goes for a kill against Pratt in a match earlier this season at Perryman Athletic Complex.

HUTCHINSON - Playing their fourth match in six days definitely took a toll on Patrick Hiltz's team. That was fairly evident on Tuesday night.

Jenna Thorne had 18 kills and 10 digs, Shelby Reeder added 28 digs, and Hutchinson beat Garden City Community College in four sets 8-25, 25-23, 13-25, 16-25 at the Sports Arena.

Garden City's tired legs showed from the start as Kristina Head's spike landed just inside the line, Myracle Lettries lasered a kill down the middle, and Hutchinson led 8-1 forcing Hiltz to call a timeout. It didn't matter. The Blue Dragons scored the next 13 points, and only when Pulelehua Keb's attack forced a Hutchinson error did the run finally stop.

But the Broncbusters totally flipped the script in the second set overcoming an early 4-0 deficit. An attack error on Hutchinson tied things up before Keb's Kill gave the brown and gold their first lead at 10-9. Later in the frame, trailing 22-21, Tauja Durham recorded back-to-back kills, and the Blue Dragons were charged with consecutive attack errors, giving Garden City a two-point victory.

However, Hutchinson regained control in the third jumping out to an 11-3 advantage. Taegen Larsen's kill stretched the lead to double digits, and Thorne's spike made it 19-8. They pushed the lead to 12 before Head finished off the set with a crosscourt kill.

But what Hiltz will be most frustrated about when he goes back and watches the film, will be the fourth set. Garden City looked sharp early, and after Remi Vargas's diving save to keep the rally alive, Alli Meng blocked Thorne's attack, and the Broncbusters had a 7-2 lead. Hutchinson called timeout. From there, it was all Blue Dragons, finishing the match on a 23-9 run punctuated by Larsen's kill that put Garden City away.

Head finished with 15 kills and six total blocks for Hutchinson, which won for the 10th time in their last 11 matches. Chloe Price chipped in 44 assists.

Durham and Reagan Karlin each had eight kills for Garden City, which dropped their third straight. They dropped to 8-10 overall and 4-4 in conference play.

Garden City hosts Independence at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday.