Tigers wrap up winning weekend

A week ago? Probably not.

After going 3-0 Friday? Absolutely.

The Marshalltown Community College volleyball team overcame a 2-0 deficit in its opening match Saturday at the Tiger Invitational, downing Allen County CC in a five-set nailbiter as a part of a 5-1 weekend for the tournament hosts.

Marshalltown marched to a 3-0 start to the invitational on Friday, fighting past Fort Scott (3-0), Coffeyville (3-2) and Graceland JV (3-1). The boost of confidence helped carry the Tigers (8-8) through Saturday’s early deficit against Allen County, something MCC coach Chris Brees said he wasn’t sure his squad would have been able to do without Friday’s unbeaten edge.

After falling behind 2-0, the Tigers traveled the length of the comeback trail for a five-set win over the Red Devils, 22-25, 26-28, 25-20, 28-26, 15-11. Meghann Cole and Miranda Smith charted 12 kills to lead the Tigers, Katelyn Yauslin had 11 and setter Sam Hinrichs had 10 in the marathon match.

Hinrichs finished with 41 assists, libero player Ashley Salgado overcame a head laceration to tally 54 digs, and Alyssa Whitmore had 48 digs.

Salgado made a diving attempt that ended with her banging the back of her head into a pointed corner of a nearby grandstand, and she sat out the remainder of the second set and most of the third set as a trainer attended to her wound.

She returned to the lineup in time to help the Tigers celebrate a colossal comeback.

Smith scored 10 total blocks, Hinrichs had six and Reeba Box added four as MCC moved to 4-0 on the weekend.

The well finally ran dry for the Tigers against NJCAA Division II No. 9-ranked Lincoln Land, which swept MCC 25-21, 25-20, 26-24. Yauslin led the way with nine kills, Smith had seven and Box added six as MCC put up a good fight against a talented opponent. With its 4-0 weekend, Lincoln Land improved to 14-1 on the year.

Marshalltown closed out the tournament against a Graceland junior varsity unit, beating the Yellowjackets for the second time in as many nights, 25-23, 21-25, 25-14, 25-21. MCC topped Graceland in four sets in Friday’s finale as well.

On Saturday, Yauslin erupted for 15 kills to lead the way. Hinrichs was next up with seven kills to go along with her 29 assists. Smith scored five kills and a team-best six blocks, while Salgado (31), Whitmore (22) and Box (21) paced the defense in digs. Hinrichs and Box both had four service aces and Mehlon Maxwell contributed three.

Yauslin amassed a whopping 35 kills on the day to lead MCC, while Smith had 21 blocks total. Hinrichs finished with 91 assists, 18 kills and eight blocks, while Salgado (123) and Whitmore (90) led the way in digs. Emily Anker chipped in with six service aces, including three against Lincoln Land.

Marshalltown avoided the other four ICCAC Division II programs in attendance this weekend, but the Tigers will take their shot at No. 13-ranked DMACC on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. back at the Student Activity Center. The Bears went 2-0 on Friday but 0-2 on Saturday and currently stand at 10-4 this season.