Lincoln records court win against Tigers

PHOTOS BY MIKE CARROLL/PLAINSMAN Huron’s Makenzie Siemonsma spikes the ball during a match against Sioux Falls Lincoln on Thursday at Huron Arena.

HURON — The Huron Tigers were competitive in each set, but after winning the first set, lost the next three Tuesday night, dropping the 3-1 decision to the Sioux Falls Lincoln Patriots. Set scores for Lincoln were 23-25, 25-20, 25-19 and 25-18.

Lincoln improves to 9-6 with the win, while Huron falls to 8-10.

A high point during the match came when Huron senior setter Hamtyn Heinz went past the 1,000 mark in career digs for the Tigers.

“I thought we came out and played much more competitively tonight,” said TyAnn Ulmer, Huron head coach. “We made some lineup changes and we didn’t really get much of a chance to practice the change and the girls adapted well.”

Neither team could establish the upper hand in the early going of the match, as the lead never got to be more than three points and the teams were knotted at 12-12 at the midway point of the set, with Huron getting timely swings from Aly Davis, DaJai Claggett and Samantha Mangmoradeth.

After they traded points, Huron went on a little three point run, with a kill from Mangmoradeth and two from Davis, to push the lead to three points at 16-13. A Lincoln timeout didn’t slow the momentum as a Makenzie Siemonsma kill pushed the lead to five points.

The Patriots responded, however, as Linnea Nesheim keyed an attack with two kill and teammates Hadlie Groen and Emma Kruse got in the swing of things as well as Lincoln cut the lead to two points, at 22-20.

Huron survived three set points and took the first set on a kill by Claggett.

Huron’s Hamtyn Heinz passes the ball as teammate Madison Hershman looks on during a match against Sioux Falls Lincoln on Thursday at Huron Arena. Heinz reached the 1,000 digs milestone during the match.

The second set was close throughout, as Lincoln never trailed, but couldn’t shake the Tigers either.

For Huron it was an ‘almost’ set. They could cut into a Lincoln lead, have the serve and have a chance to tie, but couldn’t get even with the Patriots. Lincoln led by four points late, 20-16, but Heinz and Claggett connected on back-to-back attempts and got the lead down to two, only to see the Patriots score three straight points and eventually pull away for the 25-20 win.

The third set played out much the same as the second. A service error by Lincoln brought the Tigers within a point, at 8-7 in the early going, but Lincoln scored three straight to open a little daylight in the score and despite spirited play from Davis, Mangmoradeth and Heinz, the Tigers never got closer than three points the rest of the way. Lincoln closed the set on a 3-0 to take a 2-1 lead in sets.

As were the first three, the fourth set was very competitive through the midway point, Mangmoradeth, who ended with nine kills in the match went back-to-back on attempts, Aurora Dreyer got a timely big swing and Siemonsma got a kill as Huron took a 6-5 lead.

At that point in the set, Nesheim took a huge swing on a kill attempt that looked to sail long.

After a lengthy discussion, the referees however ruled that a Huron player had touched the ball and awarded the point to Lincoln, tying the score.

Huron responded, as two kills from Mangmoradeth and one from Davis put Huron up by two points, 13-11, at the turn. A Heinz ace and a block-kill from Siemonsma pushed the lead to 15-11, Huron’s largest of the match.

The Lincoln attack wobbled the Tiger defense, as Groen connected on consecutive kill attempts, and after a hitting error and a net violation on the Tigers, the score was knotted at 15.

A timeout by Ulmer couldn’t stop the momentum as Nesheim scored three times down the stretch and Ella Warden collected back-to-back kills to end the set and the match. Lincoln ended the set on 13-3 run to claim the win.

For Lincoln, Nesheim had 17 kills, Groen ended with a dozen and Kaitlyn Koel chalked up 11.

Huron got 10 kills from Claggett, while both Heinz and Siemonsma added nine kills and Davis accounted for seven. Hylton Heinz had a pair of aces in the match.

“We knew that Lincoln was going to be athletic like Washington was on Tuesday,” Ulmer said, “so we kind of knew what to expect. I was happy with our competitive nature tonight and was really happy to see Aly Davis adapt to the lineup change.”

Ulmer also noted the milestone achieved by Hamtyn Heinz, noting the senior’s “hard work in practice and her leadership. She deserves the recognition for her hard work and the time she dedicates to improving. She is our leader, on the court and in practice.”

Huron will have the weekend off, before hosting Pierre on Tuesday, then will get ready to host the Rapid City schools next weekend.