MEQUON, Wis. – A successful season came to an end on Thursday night for Concordia University Wisconsin, as Edgewood College walked away with a 3-1 (25-16, 22-25, 19-25, 20-25) victory during a semifinal match in the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference Tournament.
The Falcons ended the season with a 24-7 overall record, while the wins set a program record. In addition, five seniors ended their storied careers in front of a boisterous and excited crowd inside the R. John Buuck Field House.
There were 16 scoring ties and 10 lead changes in the match between the No. 2 and No. 3 seed in the NACC. However, EC took all the momentum away from CUW in the third set with a near double-digit advantage to take control of the match.
Freshman Ashley Jehlicka (Salem, Wis.) almost posted a triple-double with nine kills, 14 assists and 19 digs, to go along with three block assists. Freshman Kaily Moegenburg (Plymouth, Wis.) added 11 kills and seven digs, while three other Falcons had at least six kills.
Sophomore Karina Klotz (Hubertus, Wis.) assisted on 20 kills, while senior Britta Duchow (Potter, Wis.) had five block assists. Senior Hannah Griffiths (Antigo, Wis.) dug 18 attack attempts and recorded three block assists, while senior Erin Howard (Labadie, Mo.) finished with 17 digs. Junior Kelsa Rubeck (Eau Claire, Wis.) also had 11 digs.
Neither team hit well, but the Eagles used a .128 attack percentage in the fourth and deciding set to earn the victory. Savannah Koester and Jordan Winkler led the visitors with 13 and 12 kills, respectively. Rachel Thomsen and Haley Schwenn combined for 37 assists, while EC served nine aces.
Defensively, Rachel Tesch led all players with 37 digs and Winkler dug 20 attack attempts. Reneee Meister was a force in the middle with three solo blocks and four block assists.
CUW controlled the opening set from the first serve and led by as many as 11 points. The Falcons hit .238 in the set, which was the highest between the rivals, while a trio of players recorded three kills. During the frame CUW twice put together a 5-0 scoring run.
EC (22-12) overcame an early CUW lead in the second frame and took control after a Schwenn service ace, 17-16. From then on, the Eagles held off the Falcons to pick up a 25-22 win to knot the match at a set apiece.
The pendulum swung towards EC's bench in the third set, as they led by nine points, 22-13, after five-straight points. CUW made a valiant effort and got to within five points, 24-19, but it wasn't enough.
The Eagles led by five points early, 11-6, in the fourth frame and increased their lead to seven, 19-12. Nonetheless, the Falcons fought back and cut the deficit to four points after four unanswered points, 21-17. In the end, EC won the set 25-20 and the match.