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Intramural volleyball: Pup 'n' Suds handles Nice Ace

BY CODY GOODWIN | OCTOBER 20, 2011 7:20 AM

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The Oct. 19 intramural volleyball matchup between Team Pup 'n' Suds and Nice Ace was a one-sided affair. Team Pup 'n' Suds won both sets, (25-13, 25-17), to begin the season unbeaten.

Both teams featured a good back-and-forth volley-fest to begin the night. The first 6 points were spread equally amongst the teams, bring them to an early 3-3 tie. It was at this point that Pup 'n' Suds took over game one, making a 9-0 run before Nice Ace could score another point.

Nice Ace finally brought the run to a halt at 12-3, before giving up another stretch of 6-straight points. Before long, Pup 'n' Suds was up 18-5 and in total control.

"We've played together before, so that definitely helps" said Drew Johnson of Pup 'n' Suds.

This is Pup 'n' Suds' second volleyball season; the same players played sand volleyball as well. Pup 'n' Suds lost in the early rounds of the playoffs in sand volleyball, but Johnson said the time together helped them as a team in the first game of indoor volleyball.

"I know a lot of times in intramurals — if you don't play together — it can be tough to get the feel for what everybody does for a team," he said.

This held true, as a lot of points scored by Pup 'n' Suds were merely mistakes by Nice Ace. Long serves, lack of communication, and mis-hits were only a few troubles that plagued Nice Ace in game one.

These miscues proved to be huge — Nice Ace dug itself a hole it couldn't escape. Although the team did make a nice run late in the first game that brought the game to within nine points, Pup 'n' Suds prevailed, 25-13.

The second game showed improvement from Nice Ace, and it kept the match a lot closer. Nice Ace scared Pup 'n' Suds in the early going, taking a 7-4 lead.

Then Jordan Westphal entered the front row for Pup 'n' Suds.

Standing at a stout 5-8, Westphal was a force behind the net, tallying five blocks and enforcing more than six set-and-spike scenarios for his team.

"A lot of people think because you're short, you can't do anything," he said. "It's a lot of fun, especially when you get to do it against taller people. It's always a good time."

Westphal's defensive effort and teammate Melanie Heath's serving brought the lead back to Pup 'n' Suds at 11-7. But the match was far from over.

Both teams battled hard, going back-and-forth in the second game. Neither team was able to break away for a large lead without the other coming back to make it interesting. Once 11-7 Pup 'n' Suds, the match turned into a 13-12 lead for Nice Ace before reverting to a 15-13 lead for Pup 'n' Suds.

But once again, Heath stepped behind the line to serve for her squad. She led the team on a 5-0 run, putting the game out of reach. She said her experience helped her serve get over the net.

"I played volleyball in high school," she said. "We liked playing sand volleyball, so we thought we'd try indoor. It was just a fun idea."

While winning helped spark what they hope will be a good season, Heath did say it's important that her team has fun.

"It was more or less that we came in to have fun and have a good time," she said. "I think we just work well together as a team, and that just came together."


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