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J-Hawks handle MHS netters in straight sets

Autumn Finch

URBANDALE — The Marshalltown volleyball team couldn’t atone for its own mistakes and the Bobcats fell in straight sets to host Urbandale in Tuesday’s cross-CIML clash.

The J-Hawks (5-6) capitalized on Marshalltown’s 21 swinging errors and seven service errors en route to a 25-16, 25-14, 25-21 triumph.

The Bobcats (1-4) had only one more kill (22) than attack errors and one more service ace (8) than errors on the night.

“We are struggling with playing with a sense of urgency,” said MHS head coach Chris Brees. “We are choosing to play scared, which is showing on all sides of the ball.

“We will work this week on finding some tenacity on defense. We wasted a lot of opportunities on easy balls. Urbandale is very beatable this year, we just gave up more points than we earned.”

Autumn Finch led the Marshalltown attack with seven kills, while Sophie Younkin finished with five kills. Erica Johnson and Hayden Oetker added three kills apiece, Tasia Pohle pitched in with two kills and a team-leading two blocks, and both Grace Fisher and Gabby Himes had one kill.

“Grace Fisher got some considerable playing time tonight and was one of the few bright spots,” said Brees. “We have great kids and athletes, they are just not believing in their team.”

Madi Finch compiled 19 assists as the Marshalltown pivot, while Mayah Carson, Brittany Sichra and Johnson had six digs apiece. Fisher finished with five more.

At the service line, Johnson was 9-for-9 with four aces and Kyra Feldman was 10-for-10 with two aces to stand out for the Bobcats.

Brees is hoping his squad gets another shot at Urbandale at some point Saturday at the Southeast Polk Tournament. Marshalltown meets up with Des Moines East, 5A No. 8 Council Bluffs Abraham Lincoln and 3A No. 10 Red Oak in pool play.