A glance at the weekly update of statistical leaders on the National Junior College Athletic Association website left little doubt as to who the Marshalltown Community College volleyball team would turn to in a time of need.
The free scouting report did little good for Southeastern, however, as MCC took to the court for Wednesday night's ICCAC Division II clash without the country's leader in kills.
Marshalltown Community College sophomore hitter Mady Van Metre suffered a concussion during the opening week of women's basketball practice and was sidelined for 'Dig Pink Night' at the Student Activity Center. But where she wasn't, her teammates were, and the Tigers still swept Southeastern in three sets, 25-21, 25-16, 25-19.
T-R PHOTO BY ROSS THEDE
MCC freshman Katelyn Yauslin hammers out one of her team-leading 15 kills against Southeastern defenders Andi Trout (11) and Taylor Young (6) during the second set of Wednesday’s ICCAC Division II match at the Student Activity Center.
Freshman Katelyn Yauslin compiled 15 kills and sophomore Sam Oujiri added 11 as MCC (10-19, 3-2) moved into a fourth-place tie with Southwestern in the ICCAC D-II standings.
The Tigers finish out the week with the Kishwaukee Invitational Friday and Saturday in Rockford, Ill., and they'll do it with or without Van Metre.
"She's day-to-day with a concussion, but we're operating as if we won't have her this weekend," said MCC head coach Chris Brees, "but we're hoping we do."
Van Metre's 424 kills are tops in the nation at the NJCAA D-II level according to Wednesday's statistical report, and her 4.28 kills per set rank third.
Somewhere down around 46th in the country, Yauslin came alive as an outside hitter in Van Metre's place and pounded out a match-high 15 kills. Eight of them came in the first set alone.
"We were hoping she would do that, she's been swinging well," Brees said. "We moved her over to the left side and she adjusted to that and played all the way around."
Tanya Literski totaled 34 assists, and Ashley Salgado led the defense with 19 digs. Ashton Baardseth saw a considerable boost in playing time with Van Metre's absence, and Baardseth picked up six digs in filling the exact role Brees asked of her.
"She went in and did it perfectly," he said. "That's something we've been talking about is executing what we're asking, and that's a prime example of that.
"We had to leave Tanya one-on-one and block the angle and let them swing line, and (Southeastern) made a lot of swinging errors. That's how we win, we just put the ball back in play."
Yauslin was at the service line in game two when the Tigers pulled away, as consecutive aces kickstarted a four-point surge. Alyssa Whitmore, a former libero player at East Marshall High School, had kills for three of MCC's final six points to finish off the set.
Southeastern (4-18, 0-4) tried to hang around in the third game, battling to within 12-10 before Salgado served up four points in a 5-0 run with a pair of aces to reclaim a seven-point advantage.
A 4-1 Tiger spurt completed the evening, with Oujiri's tip over the middle block finding the floor for the final point of the match.
"With the number one player in the nation in kills out, to sweep somebody, regardless of their record, is great," said Brees.
Salgado had six of the Tigers' nine service aces, Yauslin had two and Oujiri the other.
Southeastern was led by Ellie Miller and Delaney Blakely with nine kills apiece. Taylor Arnold paced the Blackhawks with 14 digs.
Marshalltown's weekend schedule starts Friday with a noon match against Black Hawk College of Moline, and then College of Lake County is slated for 2 p.m. On Saturday, the Tigers take on McHenry County at 2 p.m. and NJCAA D-III No. 5-ranked Harper College at 4 p.m.