The Valley City State volleyball team earned its third straight sweep on Friday night, picking up an impressive conference win at Dickinson State: 25-14, 25-21, 25-17.
In the last seven days VCSU has swept Waldorf University, Mayville State and Dickinson State. With three wins in a row and four wins in the last five matches, Valley City State improves to 11-20 overall and 7-8 in conference play. The Vikings also moved into sole possession of fourth place in the NSAA standings with one day of conference play remaining.
Valley City State closes conference play Saturday with a 3 p.m. match at University of Jamestown. Waldorf University (17-20, 6-9 NSAA) and Dickinson State (11-19 overall, 6-9 NSAA) are currently a game back of VCSU in the conference standings. A win Saturday by VCSU would secure the No. 4 seed – and a first round home match – for the NSAA Tournament. A loss would open the possibility of a two or three-way tie with Waldorf and Dickinson. Waldorf hosts Presentation College on Saturday while Dickinson hosts Mayville State.
Friday night's win was an impressive victory for the Vikings, who were previously 0-2 against the Blue Hawks this season. VCSU trailed the Blue Hawks for just three total points the entire night. The Vikings did not trail for a single point in games one and three, and trailed for just three points early in game two.
VCSU set the tone early by jumping out to a 9-2 and 20-9 lead in game one. Tied 15-15 in game two, the Vikings scored six of the next seven points to build a 21-16 lead they would not relinquish. The Vikings did not trail in game three, but again separated themselves late. Leading 17-15, the Vikings scored five straight points to take control of the game and finish off the sweep.
The Vikings outhit Dickinson .217 to .079 in the match. Taylor Sharp and Megan Johnson both hit over .300 and finished with 12 kills each for VCSU. Clarissa Olson added seven kills and Leah Ruter chipped in five.
Taylor Balkan had a double-double with 32 assists and 13 digs. Both Darrien Cantelo and Leah Ruter had two aces, and Charlotte Huschka finished with 12 digs. Nicolette Bloomer had three solo blocks that was part of a six block night by the Vikings.
Up next: Valley City State (11-20, 7-8 NSAA) closes the regular season Saturday at Jamestown with a 3 p.m. match.