FORT SCOTT, Kan. – Coming off a pair of wins last week, the Cloud County Community College volleyball team would give number-16 ranked Fort Scott all they could handle as part of a three-set road loss to the Greyhounds inside of Arnold Arena in Fort Scott on Tuesday.
The loss would drop Cloud County to 4-5 overall and 4-5 in the Kansas Jayhawk Community College Conference while Fort Scott would pick up their sixth win of the year to improve to 6-4 overall and 6-4 in conference play.
A nip-and-tuck first set would see both Cloud County and Fort Scott come out ready to play with both teams limiting their errors early on. The strong play from the teams would see things go back-and-forth for the first 12 points of the set as the first multi-point lead would not come until 8-6 on a Jaycee Burghart kill. The Greyhounds would not allow for the lead to hold for long as things would again become tight for the next several points before seeing Cloud County use a Natasha Dooley kill to go up 18-15 and force an FSCC timeout.
Back-to-back errors by the T-Birds however would allow for the Greyhounds to get back within a point and eventually tie things up at 20-20. The two squads would then trade off two-point spurts to see things tied up at 22-22 to set up a crucial end to the set. Fort Scott would manage to get two kills on the next three points to get to set point as a service ace off the top of the net would allow the Greyhounds to grab a 1-0 match lead on a 25-23 set victory.
The close first set would wind up setting the tone for the second and third sets as both teams would carry over their play from the opening set. After trading the first six points of the set, a 4-0 run would allow the T-Birds to take a 7-3 lead that would eventually grow to 10-5 on a Dooley tip-kill. Fort Scott would not be phased however as the Greyhounds would score 10 of the next 13 points to grab a 16-13 lead midway through the set.
Another run by CCCC would see the T-Birds utilize a 5-0 spurt to reclaim the lead at 18-15 before holding a 20-17 lead on a Geraldyn Palacios kill to force an FSCC timeout. The timeout would prove much needed for the Greyhounds as Fort Scott would come back to score six of the next eight to go up 23-22 as the set would be decided in extra points. With the score tied at 25-25, FSCC would manage to get a kill and a block to end the set to win 27-25.
More of the same would be seen in the third set as the largest lead throughout the set by either team would be two points. With Cloud County needing a set win to stay alive in the match, the T-Birds would turn to Palacios midway through the set as the sophomore would two big kills to keep CCCC up by two. Errors would then begin to find their way to the T-Birds as the Greyhounds would take advantage of each mistake Cloud County would make as CCCC would be unable to find enough points down the stretch to drop a 25-23 set decision to end the match.
Palacios would lead the T-Birds with 13 kills on 21 total attempts while both Dooley and Hollie Stewart would finish with eight kills each. Burghart would finish with 33 of Cloud County's 36 set assists and add a service ace in the match.
CCCC is back on the road to take on Kansas City Kansas Community College at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday. Cloud County will look to avenge a three-set loss to the Blue Devils from back on Jan. 26 in what was the season opener for the T-Birds.