The Lady Lions Volleyball team is looking to build off one of its most successful seasons in recent history in which they came up just short, losing in the North Central Region championship game in a 5th set tie break game 13-15. The Lady Lions welcome new first year head coach LuAnn Geller as well as first year assistant coach Jessie Wagler who played 4 years for the Lady Lions Volleyball team. The team welcomes back only 3 players from last year’s squad, junior Kylie Flemmer (Beulah, ND), sophomores Kelby Wiederhold (Hill City, SD) and CJ Harlan (Helena, MT). Joining the returners are two transfers, junior Mariah Elliott (Thedford, NE) and sophomore Carmeille Foster (Aberdeen, SD) and 3 freshman Jessica Lentz (Onida, SD) SaraLi Peterson (Dazey, ND) and Jordan Rohrbach (Aberdeen, SD). The Lions travelled to North Central University for the North Central Invite this past weekend in which they played 4 games in two days again North Central Region opponents, Faith Baptist Bible College, North Central University and 8th ranked Providence University College. The Lady Lions begin the season ranked 10th in the NCCAA Women’s DII Volleyball poll.
The Lady Lions opened their weekend and season against Faith Baptist Bible College Eagles on Friday. The Lady Lions would take the first game 25 to 21 over the Eagles with Carmeille Foster having 6 kills and Mariah Elliot added 5 and Kylie Flemmer had 14 assists. The Eagles would respond taking the next 3 games from the Lady Lions 20-25, 15-25 and 21-25.
The Lady Lions then took on host school North Central University Rams. The Lady Lions would make short work of the Rams in the first two games winning 25-16 and 25-14. The third game was a little tougher for the Lady Lions but they would pull it out winning 25-22 to win the match. In the win the Lady Lions were led by Carmeille Foster with 13 kills, Jessica Lentz with 12 kills and Mariah Elliott added 8. Kylie Flemmer had 27 assist and 8 digs and Jordan Rohrbach led the team with 14 digs. The win moved the Lady Lions to 1-1 on the season and 1-0 in North Central Region play.
They then got a chance to redeem themselves against Faith Baptist Bible College and the Lady Lions did not let the opportunity go by. The Lady Lions won the first game 25 to 19 and the second game 25 to 18. They would drop the third game in a tough fought battle 28 to 30. They bounced back in game four beating the Eagles 25 to 16 to move their record to 2-1 and 2-0 in North Central Region play. In the win the Lady Lions were paced by Carmeille Fosters’ 61 kills and Mariah Elliott’s 38 kills. Kylie Flemmer led the Lady Lions with 121 assists for the match, Jordan Rohrbach led the way with 35 digs and SaraLi Peterson added 32 digs.
The Lady Lions next opponent was the 8th ranked team in the nation Providence University College, the team that beat them in a 5th game tie break last year in the North Central Region championship game. Providence would take the first two games easily from the Lady Lions 12 to 25 and 19 to 25. The Lady Lions fought hard but fell just short losing 23 to 25 to the defending region champions losing all three games. In the loss the Lady Lions were again led by Carmeille Foster with 27 kills, Kylie Flemmer had 32 assists and Jordan Rohrbach led with 28 digs. The loss dropped the Lady Lions to 2-2 on the season and 2-1 in North Central Region play, which will place them as the #2 team in the region.
Over the 4 game weekend, Carmeille Foster led the Lions in Kills with 155, serving aces with 21 and blocks with 43 total (solo + assisted) and Kylie Flemmer led in assists with 301 averaging just over 21 per game. Mariah Elliott added 99 kills, 74 digs, 6 aces and 6 blocks, while Jordan Rohrbach led the Lady Lions in digs with 107 to go with her 13 aces.
The Lady Lions have a busy week coming up as they take on Jamestown College JV in Jamestown, ND on Monday night followed by a match against Fergus Falls Community College in Fergus Falls, MN Wednesday then another road game against Valley City State University in Valley City, ND on Friday. They finally get their first home match of the year Saturday morning at 11am against Lake Region State College.