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Casper too big, too strong for Rustlers on VB court

Oct 4, 2013 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports Editor

The loss dropped the Rustlers to 1-4 in conference play. Casper is 5-1.

Casper College won three consecutive sets after losing the first one to the Central Wyoming College Rustlers for a Region IX volleyball victory Thursday night at Rustler Gym.

Casper took home a 24-26, 25-17, 25-22, 25-15, win to stay in contention for a top tournament seed from the region.

The loss dropped the Rustlers to 1-4 in conference play. Casper is 5-1.

"At times, we played very well against Casper, but at times are very limited," CWC coach Tiffany Stauffenberg said. "We're not going to get the end result we want unless we get more consistent.

We don't have the fight that we need to win matches against good teams. I feel we are giving up too early."

Good start

In the first game, the Rustlers were up 19-13. Casper pulled to within 20-18. The two teams were deadlocked at 22-22 and 24-24 before Kiara Skinner scored the last two points for the win.

"We started the match playing well, but again it wasn't the entire match," Stauffenberg said. "We built a big lead early, but almost let it slip through our hands."

Momentum shift

Casper seized the momentum in the next three sets and never let it go.

Casper was all over CWC in the second set, creating a number of different hitting options in the front row.

"Our passing was definitely off, but you have to give credit to a tough-serving Casper team," Stauffenberg said. "Our offense was too slow against a good blocking team."

The third set could have gone either way.

CWC was knotted at 20-20 before Casper College won the pivotal points to collect the win.

"We rarely had three options out of our offense and that made it easy for them to block," Stauffenberg said.

Casper powered its way through the fourth set to close out the win.

One of Casper's top player is 5-foot-11 outside hitter Madison Legerski of Laramie, the daughter of University of Wyoming women's basketball coach Joe Legerski.

Rahnee Jackson was the libero for Casper.

Jackson played a big role in stopping CWC's offense with dig after dig.

"Casper is very talented, and they are big," Stauffenberg said.

CWC's Sam Unruh had a productive night with eight kills and seven blocks.

Jordan Leyba passed out 18 assists. Jess Kohler earned 26 digs from the back row. Maddie Kelley slammed seven kills. Megan Cook had three aces.

Huge test

CWC takes on nationally ranked Western Wyoming on Saturday afternoon in Rock Springs.

Western is No. 6 in the latest National Junior College Athletic Association poll and undefeated in conference play at 5-0.

"Western is very tough," Stauffenberg said.

"They are even bigger than Casper, plus they have a lot of power."

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