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Rustlers get big win at home
CWC's Abigail Ehlers dived for the ball against the Casper Lady Thunderbirds. The Lady Rustlers won the match in four sets. Photo by Wayne Nicholls

Rustlers get big win at home vs. Casper College T-Birds

Oct 24, 2012 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports Editor

Central Wyoming College delivered its most critical victory of the volleyball season Tuesday night in a four-set win over Casper College at Rustler Gym.

The nationally ranked Rustlers won the Region IX conference match 20-25, 27-25, 25-21, 25-14 to end the regular season on a high note.

CWC lost to Western Wyoming last Tuesday, Oct 16, in Rock Springs and entered the Casper match on a one-game losing streak. The Rustlers are ranked No. 12 in the junior college volleyball poll. Casper College is receiving votes for the top 20.

"The win was exactly what you needed going into the Region IX tournament," CWC head coach Tiffany Stauffenberg said. "You wanted to regain your confidence and you wanted to win your last home match, especially when the gym was filled. All in all, it was a super win for us."

Casper College swept the Rustlers in the first meeting of the season.

"It felt so great," CWC sophomore Kaitlyn Tracy Eaton said. "We knew that we had to play our game. We came out ready to go. It feels awesome. When our passing and our blocking is on, that is when we do the best. Casper is a great team. They always have been. This was a huge win for us."

The win moved the Rustlers to 19-7 overall and 9-3 in conference play.

Region race

CWC could finish either second or third in the Region IX conference standings. Northwest College is first at 9-2. Western Wyoming is 8-3. Northwest plays at Casper College on Thursday night.

"We need Casper to win to give us the No. 2 seed," Stauffenberg said. "Regardless of a No. 2 or No. 3 seed, you are on the same side of the bracket."

The Region IX tournament starts Wednesday, Oct., 31, at Northwest College in Powell.

"It's not going to hurt us," said Stauffenberg about having a week off. "We had a great week of practice last week."

Sophomores Abigail Ehlers, Dallas Horn, Kaitlyn Tracy Eaton, Dallas Horn, Kali Howe and Ana Tenorio were honored before the match vs. the Lady Thunderbirds.

"It's always a very emotional night," Stauffenberg said. "They always put so much into the program. They are very dedicated."

CWC finished its home season with a 5-1 record. The only loss was a five-set setback to nationally ranked Western Wyoming.

"It's sad to think that this is their last home match," Stauffenberg said. "I'm so proud of each and every one of them."

WC 3, Casper 1

Casper College came took an early lead vs. CWC.

The Lady Thunderbirds were up 18-12 in the first set and 21-18 before winning by five points.

The momentum changed for the Rustlers late in the second set.

"We just got to playing our type of game after the first set," Stauffenberg said.

"I don't know if we had nerves going on or what. They never gave up. They wanted it very bad."

Casper College had a 22-20 lead when took a timeout.

CWC deadlocked the score at 23-23, but Casper went up 24-23. Eaton tied it at 24-24 on another kill. The teams were knotted at 25-25. CWC won the match on a Eaton kill and a Flavia Araujo kill.

"That was big," Stauffenberg said. "We took that into the third set.

They were playing with a of heart and a lot of fight."

In the third set, Araujo took charge with her powerful play at the net, building a 17-10 lead.

Araujo and Eaton traded kills at the end for the four-point win.

In the fourth set, it was all CWC from start to finish as the Rustlers closed out the match in style.

Araujo ended with 19 kills, while Eaton put down 10. Ehlers had 42 assists. Jess Foy registered 21 digs.

CWC stats from match vs. Casper

CWC 3, Casper College 1 -- Abigail Ehlers, four kills, two blocks, 13 digs, 42 assists; Sam Unruh, eight kills, six blocks; Kaitlyn Tracy Eaton, 10 kills, one ace, seven blocks, three digs; Flavia Araujo, 19 kills, six blocks, seven digs; Marissa Cutts, four kills, three blocks, one dig; Asya Oguz, eight kills, one block, nine digs; Jess Foy, one ace, 21 digs; Kali Howe, five digs.

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