Trinity battles back to defeat Silver Creek in five sets

Just when it looked the Trinity Lutheran volleyball was down and out, the Cougars battled back from two sets down to defeat Silver Creek in five sets on Thursday inside Bollinger Athletic Complex.

The Dragons came in with a 10-4 record and undefeated conference record.

Trinity got off to a great start in the match, going up 4-1 then 8-5. Once Silver Creek rallied off a few points to even the score, neither team could gain much a lead more than one for the next several points.

The Dragons seemed to gain an advantage at 17-15 when Trinity head coach Faith Wilder-Newland called timeout.

Although a minor edge on the scoreboard, it was just enough to carry the Dragons through the first set as they won it 25-21. Set point came off a service error by Trinity.

The second set started in a similar, back-and-forth battle. Trinity fell down 10-7 but brought it back to within one at 11-10.

Then the Dragons went on a 8-1 run, taking a 19-12 lead and running away with the second set 25-19. The Dragons’ set point came off a hit from Elle Priddy that barely touched the net and dropped down on Trinity’s side of the court.

The Cougars got out to a 6-2 lead in the third set after a couple aces from Carson Bowling.

Tied at 10 all, Bailey Tabeling had back-to-black blocks on Silver Creek’s Addison Makun to get the crowd fired up.

It helped spark a run that got Trinity a 16-13 lead and forced Silver Creek head coach Jeff Zimmerman to call timeout.

Tabeling continued her impressive performance in the third set. Back-to-back kills gave the Cougars a 22-18 lead.

Silver Creek fired off three-straight points after that to reel the set back within one point, but Tabeling helped the Cougars recover. She had another kill, then a hitting error by Silver Creek set up Trinity’s set point, and Tabeling tipped it over the net to win the third set 25-21.

The Cougars started out the fourth set with all the momentum, taking a 4-0 lead, but then Silver Creek turned it around. The Dragons went on a big run to take a 16-8 lead.

The Cougars seemed down and out for a majority of the fourth set, but a late run tightened things up as they trailed 22-19 after a kill from Bowling.

The Cougars cut the lead all the way down to 24-23 and forced Zimmerman to call another timeout. Another Bowling kill evened things up at 24 all.

After a long battle, Trinity finally came away with the fourth set after a kill from Tabeling made it 30-28.

That forced the fifth set. The Cougars won it 15-12 to complete the comeback and improve to 13-5 on the season.

Trinity was without regular varsity players Madison Keith and Cheyenne Campbell as well, so this match provided great experience for the Cougars’ younger players.

Trinity will now be off until next Tuesday when they go up the road and play at Crothersville.