Simpson cruises to victory, defeats Iowa Wesleyan 3-0


by Aaron Young

In its home opener of the 2013 season, the Simpson College volleyball team defeated Iowa Wesleyan 3-0 Wednesday evening.
Set scores for the contest were 25-14, 25-13 and 26-24.
The Storm (4-0) came into the match with a successful weekend trip over Labor Day weekend, going a perfect 3-0 at the NYU Labor Day Invitational in New York, N.Y.
Head coach Lana Smith explained that the team’s goal is to go undefeated going into conference play while making heads turn from their seventh-place prediction in the Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Association (IIAC) Preseason Coaches’ Poll.
Improving to 4-0 and remaining undefeated is wonderful, according to Smith.
“It’s much improved over last year,” Smith said. “We’ve got a good group of girls, and going into conference play we are excited about being 4-0.”
Simpson seemed to be untamed after the first two sets, until Iowa Wesleyan started to show some life going into the third set. With multiple lead changes, the Storm were able to even the score 24-24 before ultimately winning the set and match by a score of 26-24.
Smith said the goal in the third set, as well as a goal for the remainder of the season, was to finish.
“That third match went a little back and forth,” Smith said. “We talked to them about finishing strong and I was really proud of them. Our motto tonight was ‘Momentum.’ Momentum is everything so it was nice to win in three [sets].”
Sophomore outside-hitter Tabitha Blaser led the Storm in kills (10). She recorded an attacking percentage at about 29 percent. Blaser was also a key contributor on defense, posting 8 digs. Sophomore setter Katie Kieffer notched 34 assists to the Storm’s scoring efforts, while senior outside-hitter/defensive specialist Kim Rogers tallied a team-high in digs with 26.
The Storm won’t see any action on the hardwood for about another week, as the team will travel to St. Peter, Minn. on Friday, Sept. 13, competing at the Gustavus Adolphus Invitational. The two-day tournament will feature Simpson going head-to-head with other colleges such as Augsburg College, Wisconsin-River Falls, Bethany
Lutheran and tournament-host Gustavus Adolphus.
The Storm’s first game will be against Augsburg that Friday with a start-time of 5 p.m.