After a rough opening weekend at the Crystal Inn Invites volleyball tournament in Salt Lake, Northwest College volleyball got a bit of atonement at this past weekend’s Starr Invitational in Twin Falls, Idaho by posting a 3-1 record.
At Salt Lake, the Trappers lost their first three matches to the College of Central Florida, Missouri State University - West Plains and last year’s NJCAA champion, College of Southern Idaho.
Northwest actually took the opening set against the Southern Idaho Eagles, but dropped the next three before closing out the tournament on a positive note by topping NJCAA runner-up Western Nebraska 3-1.
After an intensely contested first set, which went to the Cougars by a 31-29 score, the Trappers got the next three wins by ever-increasing margins.
A 25-23 win in the second set evened things up, with 25-22 and 25-15 wins securing the match.
The positives from the finale carried over to Twin Falls, where the ladies in red began their tournament slate with a three-set sweep of North Idaho College.
The opening set saw a 25-11 trouncing before Idaho kept things closer in a 25-21 defeat. Northwest then ended it with a 25-17 win.
A tougher battle ensued in the second match against Hutchinson Community College. The Lady Trappers won the first set 25-22, but the Dragons held on for three close wins in the next three sets, none by more than five points. That put Northwest at 1-1 for the tournament.
The Trappers responded in strong fashion though, winning their final two matches with three-set sweeps — topping the Chemeketa Community College and Yavapai College.
“I’m seeing some good things, just as many as I’d like to,” head coach Shaun Pohlman said. “We dropped out of the top 20 in national rankings after Salt Lake. There has been some progress, but we need to see more.”
Now 5-4 in match-play on the season, Northwest heads east to Scottsbluff, Nebraska this weekend for the annual Wyo-Braska Invitational tournament.