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Raider volleyball opens 2-2

Raider junior Amber Saathoff spikes the ball over the net for a kill in the Hudson volleyball team's first action of the season last Tuesday against Durand at the Hudson Quad. Photo by Bob Burrows

The Raider volleyball team opened its season last week by going 2-1 Tuesday at the Hudson Quad before dropping its Big Rivers Conference opener at Eau Claire Memorial, 3-1, Thursday.

Hudson will travel to Ellsworth for a nonconference match Thursday, Sept. 10 before hosting the Raider Invitational Saturday, Sept. 12 beginning at 10 a.m.

Last Tuesday, Hudson dropped the opening game in all three of its matches but bounced back to post 2-1 wins over Durand and Somerset before losing, 2-1 to New Richmond.

The Raiders beat Durand by scores of 19-25, 25-15, 15-11 and Somerset 18-25, 25-16, 17-15, but lost to New Richmond 21-25, 25-16, 11-15.

Junior Britni Eberlin led the Raider offense with 19 total kills while sophomore Stephanie Little and senior Natalie Horsman finished with 14 kills each.

Junior Amber Saathoff dished out 37 assists in the three matches and senior Kirsten Iverson finished with 18 while senior Megan Kelly added 11. Senior Elizabeth Gagliardi led the defense with 26 digs.

Thursday at Eau Claire Memorial, the Raiders pulled to within 2-1 with a 25-16 win in the third game but came out on the short end of a 3-1 decision by scores of 18-25, 24-26, 25-16, 17-25.

"We struggled all night with our passing and execution, so we didn't get into our offense often enough," Raider head coach Dennis Saathoff said. "We were really clicking in the third set but we could not sustain it."

Amber Saathoff led all players with 10 kills and 21 assists. Horsman contributed seven kills while senior Ashlyn Ferron had six and Little and Eberlin five each. Iverson finished with 11 assists while Gagliardi led the team with 12 digs.

Bob Burrows
Bob Burrows has been sports editor at the River Falls Journal since 1996 and at the Hudson Star-Observer since 2009. Prior to joining the Journal, Burrows served as sports editor with Ledger Publications in Balsam Lake, Wis. A native of Bayonne, N.J. and a U.S. Navy veteran, Burrows attended Marquette University before completing his studies at UW-River Falls in 1992.
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