Rat­tlers bounce back

Medicine Hat News - - SPORTS - RYAN MC­CRACKEN rm­c­cracken@medicine­hat­news.com Twit­ter: MHNMcCracken

The Medicine Hat Rat­tlers are back in the win col­umn.

Af­ter drop­ping two straight games last week­end in Red Deer, the Rat­tlers women’s vol­ley­ball team re­turned home for a rare Thurs­day night ri­valry matchup with the Leth­bridge Ko­di­aks and cruised to a con­vinc­ing straight sets vic­tory (25-22, 25-13, 25-17).

“That was re­ally im­por­tant for us, to bounce back,” said Rat­tlers head coach Kim Stone­house. “I thought the girls han­dled them­selves re­ally well. You don’t like to lose, but if you’re go­ing to, you want to see your team do what we did tonight.”

The vic­tory snapped Medicine Hat’s small skid — push­ing the Rat­tlers to 3-4 on the Al­berta Col­leges Ath­let­ics Con­fer­ence sea­son — while ex­tend­ing Leth­bridge’s los­ing streak to eight games.

“We’re just work­ing hard to try and stop our los­ing streak,” said Ko­di­aks out­side hit­ter Car­ley Don­eff, a for­mer McCoy Colt. “It’s def­i­nitely a spe­cial one for me be­cause I’m from here, this is my home­town. We were re­ally look­ing for­ward to com­ing out with the W, we just couldn’t pull through.”

Am­ber Stigter led Medicine Hat’s at­tack with 11 kills, while Shaya Suchy pow­ered the de­fence with 11 digs and MacKen­zie Grif­fith, and Brooke Christie both added two blocks.

With the Ko­di­aks (1-8) itch­ing to break their los­ing spell, Rat­tlers mid­dle Me­gan Hoe­ber says get­ting the first set was cru­cial.

“That was big for our mo­men­tum. It kind of put them down a lit­tle bit,” said Hoe­ber, who had three kills and a block. “Af­ter last week­end ev­ery­one knew we could play bet­ter than we did and to see it on the court tonight re­ally helped.”

The Ko­di­aks were held to just 24 kills in the loss, seven of which came from Laura Ser­afini. Andie Cur­ran led the de­fence with four digs.

The Rat­tlers and Ko­di­aks go back at it Satur­day in Leth­bridge at 6 p.m.

“It’s al­ways im­por­tant to play well against Leth­bridge,” said Stone­house. “They’re one of those teams that can be the tough­est to play against be­cause you never know when they’re go­ing to find their rhythm.”

The Rat­tlers men’s vol­ley­ball team was un­able to re­peat the feat later Thurs­day evening, fall­ing to the Ko­di­aks in straight sets, 25-21, 25-23, 25-18.

KeAn­dre Evans had a game-high 13 kills for Medicine Hat (5-2) and Nikola Sreck­ovic added six digs, but it wasn’t enough to steal a vic­tory from the un­de­feated Ko­di­aks (9-0).

Carter Hansen and Dax White­head both had 10 kills for Leth­bridge. Tony Al­biz­zati added seven digs.

NEWS PHOTO RYAN MC­CRACKEN

The Medicine Hat Rat­tlers cel­e­brate a point in Thurs­day’s Al­berta Col­leges Ath­letic Con­fer­ence women’s vol­ley­ball game against the Leth­bridge Ko­di­aks at the Snake Pit. Medicine Hat won in straight sets, 25-22, 2513, 25-17.

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