Digger spikers swat Skylights in three

Montana Tech has its own swat team on campus, its volleyball squad.

The Orediggers killed and blocked their way to a Frontier Conference sweep against Montana State-Northern Saturday afternoon in the Montana Tech HPER Complex. The scores were somewhat one-sided, too — 25-19, 25-18, 25-12. Box score

“We got off to a good start in each game,” Montana Tech head coach Brian Solomon said. “Our offense was really moving the ball today. Hitting .458 is a good output.”

The Orediggers were so dominant that they never trailed, not even once, in the entire match.

“We had some inconsistencies in the serving game,” Solomon said. “But it was good to see our blocking come together, finally, in the third game, right at the end.

“We’re off to a heck of a start though, (2-0 in the Frontier Conference).”

The blocking to which the coach referred totaled eight for the match, including a late-in-the-contest run that saw five of the team’s last nine points tallied on the bat-downs.

Montana Tech scored the first six points of the match for a roaring start. The run included a kill apiece by Haley Druyvestein, Angie Pancost, Korey Krumm and Annie Smoot. Blocks by Bailie Cortner and Krumm notched the other two points

The Skylights rallied to within four points, but drew no closer. The Orediggers reached game point at 24-18 on a kill by Sydney Norris, gave up a kill to MSU-Northern’s Dayna Jensen, then closed the game with a kill by Samantha Hutcheson.

The Skylights hung with Montana Tech early in the second game, but were never to go in front. They were tied four times in the set though, before the Orediggers went ahead for good on a tip shot by Druyvestein, unraveling an 8-all knot.

Kimmy Kavran’s four-point serving run helped Montana Tech to a 17-11 command. Jordan Danz plastered two kills during the surge. Another Danz kill registered game point at 24-18 before Cortner ended the set with a kill.

MSU-Northern seemed drained of energy in the third game. A hitting error by Jensen untied a 1-all score and began an 11-4 Oredigger spree. Makenzie Bauck served an ace while toe-ing the line for five straight points. Butte freshman Danika Neumann entered play later and served in a four-point run that featured four points by Druyvestein — two blocks and a kill.

A block by Krumm stuck match point at 24-10. The Skylights delalyed the inevitable with a kill by Cydney Auzenne and an Oredigger violation, Krumm called for being in the net.

Cortner, though, used a set by Alison Lunde to finish.

“We played a tough preseason and it has really helped us start the conference season this week,” Solomon said. “We had to handle some adversity and did. It was a good win.”

Cortner finished with a team-high 10 kills and two aces. Other leaders for Montana Tech were Lunde with 23 assists, Bauck with 19, Kavran with 14 digs and Danz with four blocks.

Jensen tallied 10 kills to pace MSU-Northern. Jaden Lynch put up 26 assists, Jessica Wilcox hit two aces and posted four blocks, and Sarah Stringfellow scooped 10 digs.

The Orediggers will next play next Saturday when they vie with Lewis-Clark State as part of Montana Tech Homecoming activities.


To purchase high-quality copies of these photos by local photographer Jason Silvernale, go to silvernale.smugmug.com.


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