Broncos ride another big comeback over Dordt

Hastings College poses for a pictures after winning the 2017 GPAC volleyball tournament final over Dordt, Nov. 11, 2017 (KHGI)

HASTINGS --- Comebacks are the name of the game again, as the third-ranked ladies of Hastings College topped No. 5 Dordt to win the GPAC Tournament championship (-14, -24, 17-25, -27),Saturday night at Lynn Farrell Arena.

Down 19-9 in the fourth set, Hastings head coach Matt Buttermore was already planning on his rotation for the fifth set, but the girls were not done with the fourth. They went on a 15-5 run to tie it up at 24. From there, they traded points, mostly with Dordt getting a set point, until it was 27 all. Consecutive blocks finished the match for the Broncos who had 13.0 on the evening.

Katie Placke had a huge night for Hastings College, who raced out to a big lead in the first set. Placke, a senior, had seven kills in the first set and 20 in the match while hitting .386.

Casey Krolikowski offered plenty of support (12 kills, .200) and Sage Meyer added nine for the Broncos, while Lucy Skoch was tremendously defensively (10 block assists), helping Hastings to 13.0 blocks on the night.

The right arm of Ema Altena carried Dordt back into the match with a high of 21 kills, most of which were extremely powerful, but an error at the end helped Hastings tie it at 24 in the fourth set.

This is the second straight tourney title for the Broncos, who also won the regular season's top slot. Since the Broncos already received an automatic berth to the NAIA tournament, Dordt received the second spot awarded to the GPAC win or lose coming into the match.

The national tournament begins Nov. 28 in Sioux City, Iowa with pool play before it is re-seeded with the top two seeds from each of the eight pools for single elimination.

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