Varsity Volleyball falls to Byron Center in five sets


Zoe Lipke , Sports Reporter

Senior libero Julia Bouma was a crucial aspect in the Ranger’s game last night versus the Byron Center Bulldogs. With her incredible defense against Byron Center, she helped to keep the Ranger’s in the game; however, the Bulldogs walked away with a 3-2 set win.

“I thought we performed very well,” Julia said. “We went into the game as underdogs, and I think we came out strong and gave it our all.”

This game was not only an OK White Conference match-up, but it was also a battle between two of the top five teams in the state. The game was tight the entire time and ran itself into a maximum of five sets.

“This was a battle between the second and fifth-ranked teams in the state,” head coach Kevin Zascheck said. “It was an up and down emotional game, and the girls not only competed at a high level, but they stayed composed for all five sets.”

The first set went in the Ranger’s favor, as they came out with an early lead over the Bulldogs 14-6, forcing a Byron Center timeout. This trend of dominance continued on for the Rangers throughout the first set, and they went on to win it 25-22.

“After winning the first set I felt that we really had the momentum on our side,” Julia said. “I was confident in us, and really felt like we could put up a good fight against them in the sets to come.”

The second set started off strong for the Rangers as they once again took an early lead; however, the Bulldogs soon flipped their switches and took the lead over the Rangers 10-7. Despite this slight setback, FHC came back off with five straight points from freshman Avery Weslow serving. This trend of back and forth continued, yet the Bulldogs secured the second set with a 25-22 win.

“My teammates always pump me up which allows me to have a much better performance,” Avery said. “I really think our team played as one in the game, and everyone did their part.”

With the game now tied at 1-1, it headed into set three with the Ranger’s showing dominance over the Bulldogs at the beginning of this set, which then led to FHC taking a quick lead. However, the Bulldogs made a comeback run, tying up the game at 18. From there, they stayed in control, defeating the Rangers 25-22.

The fourth set was a turning point for the Rangers since they needed a win in order to keep the game going. They proceeded to defeat the Bulldogs, dominating the fourth set 25-19. This put the game into a 2-2 set tie; however, by the end of the fifth set, the Rangers fell to the Bulldogs with a score of 25-9.

“Heading into the fifth set I was thinking that we totally had the ability to push through and win the whole game,” Julia said. “We fought hard, and in the end, the game just didn’t fall in our favor.”

This game put the Rangers at a 4-3 record overall. They will take on the East Grand Rapids Pioneers next on Tuesday, October 6. The game will be played on the Rangers’ home court and will begin at 6:00 pm.