Trolls Challenge St. Ambrose

In a home conference match the Trolls pushed NAIA ranked No. 10 and top CCAC team St. Ambrose University (Davenport, Iowa) to five sets before a winner was determined.  It was up and down match with close and lopsided sets. Trinity won the first set at 26-24, but then dropped the next two at 25-12 and 25-13. The Trolls kept the match alive with a 25-23 win in the fourth set. They could not keep that rhythm going as they fell 15-7 in the final set. The team is now 9-7 overall and 4-4 in the CCAC.

Neither team hit especially well in the first set which kept the score close. The Trolls built a 15-10 lead only to have St. Ambrose rally to tie the score at 15-15. Trinity once again went ahead and the reach set point at 24-20. The Bees score the next four points behind three blocks and a Trinity hitting error. The Trolls got the advantage when St. Ambrose committed an attacking error and the got the set on a block by Jake Ostema and Danny Lawrence.

In the second set the Trolls continue to commit a number of errors while the Fighting Bees were proficient with a .562 attacking percentage. As a result St. Ambrose jumped to a 7-1 lead and never looked back. They went ahead at 20-7 and finished out with the 25-12 win.

The third set was much the same as the second as St.  Ambrose strung together scoring runs. They had a 9-2 lead and continued to extend the scoring gap throughout the match.

Trinity fought their way back into the match in the fourth set in which the teams were only separated by a couple of points. Late in the set the Trolls trailed 20-18, but they scored the next three points to take the 21-20 lead. Trinity did not give up the top spot, although St. Ambrose tied the score twice. With a 23-23 deadlock the Trolls gained a point on an attacking error by the Bees and then got the set winner on a kill by Djordje Novakovic.

St. Ambrose took control of the fifth set as they scored the first five points.  The Trolls were able to pull to within two at 8-6, but the Fighting Bees scored the next six points to make it 14-6. Trinity got one final kill before St. Ambrose finished the set and the match.

For the match the Trolls had 38 kills with a .030 attacking percentage due in a large part to the Fighting Bees’ 18.5 blocks. St. Ambrose finished with 58 kills and a .254 attacking percentage. Novakovic led the team with 11 kills while Ben Tocila had 10. Jonathan Poortinga had four blocks and Adam Becker led the digs with 11.

The Trolls are in action again on March 7 in a match with Viterbo University. That match will be played at Saint Xavier University at 5 pm.