The Cardinal volleyball team played twice at home over the weekend, winning the match Friday against Davenport before falling to Grand Valley on Saturday. Both weekend matches went a full five sets and saw back and forth leads from the start.
On Friday, the Davenport Panthers came to the Hamilton Gymnasium for the first game of the weekend.
Davenport came into the day ranked third in the GLIAC south with a conference record of 4-5.
Despite having three fewer conference wins than the Cardinals, Davenport began the match winning the first two sets, 25-18 and 25-17.
The Cardinals, down two sets, were able to win the next two, tying up the match 2-2.
In the third set, the Cardinals fought off a three-point run by Davenport to bring the set score to 9-9.
The Cardinals would eventually win the set after senior Emily Friesl got the game winning kill, sealing the victory for the Cardinals.
On Saturday, the Cardinals hosted rival Grand Valley for the first time this season. After losing a close first set, 25-23, the Cardinals looked to make up for their deficit, by beating the Lakers with the same score in the second set.
The back and forth scoring continued as Grand Valley took the third set 25-20 before eventually dropping the fourth set to the Cardinals, 25-19.
In the weekend’s final set, Grand Valley went on a 6-1 run to put the game out of reach for the Cardinals. Following a Grand Valley kill, the Cardinals lost the match, splitting the weekend’s games 1-1.
The highlight of the weekend came from freshman Rylee Zimmerman, who is proving to be a valuable piece of the Cardinal’s team this year.
Playing in every set this weekend, Zimmerman compiled a total of 11 digs for the Cardinals this weekend. Zimmerman is the only true freshman to see the court this season for the Cardinals.
Head coach Will Stanton said he views Zimmerman’s contributions as critical to his team’s success.
“Zimmerman has been able to help the team in several areas,” Stanton said. “We are still trying to figure out how best to use her and where she can help the team most. She has seen playing time on the middle hitter and right-side hitter positions.”
The Cardinals will continue conference play this upcoming weekend. On Friday, the Cards will travel to Big Rapids to take on Ferris State, before returning to the Great Lakes Bay Region to take on rival Northwood on Saturday in Midland.