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Hauser (10) sophomore Jordan McDaniel spikes the ball at the net against Edinburgh (12) senior Jennifer Stinson during the 1st game of their match Tuesday evening at Edinburgh High School. Tommy Walker | For The Republic
EDINBURGH — After pulling out a win in Game 2 to even Tuesday night’s Mid-Hoosier Conference volleyball match, Edinburgh had leads late in Games 3 and 4.
Both times, however, Hauser rose to the challenge. The Class A No. 9 Jets were strong at the finish to pull out a 25-19, 25-27, 25-21, 25-22 victory, handing the Lancers their first MHC loss.
“It was really kind of intense there because I didn’t want to lose, but we just kept our heads up and kept trying and doing good things and ended up being on top,” said Hauser senior middle hitter Lauren Gross.
The 6-foot-2 Gross tallied 22 kills and four blocks to power the Jets’ attack.
“We went in spurts,” Edinburgh coach Tina Bottorff said. “We didn’t give up. We just had some key times where they had Lauren on the front row, and we needed Lauren on the back row. That’s just kind of the way it goes at times.”
Hauser (18-7, 6-1) was clinging to a 21-19 lead in Game 1 when Haley Webster pounded four consecutive kills to end the game. The Jets led 17-13 in Game 2, but then committed eight position or ball-handling errors as the Lancers (20-7, 5-1) rallied to even the match.
“They’re just too good a team not to have good ball control against,” Hauser coach Jeff Case said. “If you don’t take advantage of your opportunities, they’ll make you pay. We let up a little bit, and they took advantage of it and made us pay for our mistakes.
“Really, it comes down to us and what we do,” he said. “If we have good ball control, especially on serve-receive, and play tough defense and make it hard for them to score points by keeping the ball off the floor and giving us more offensive possessions, it really pays off for us.”
Edinburgh led 17-16 in Game 3 and 21-20 in Game 4 before the Jets rallied for the wins.
“That’s something we’ve been working on all year — just fighting through tough matches,” Bottorff said. “Our schedule is a little weak, and we’re starting to come into some competition. I think we could have done a little bit better but Hauser was on tonight.”
Mikala Greenlee recorded 37 assists for the Jets. Danielle Giles had 27 digs, and Paige Miller served three aces.
“Lauren Gross was awesome,” Case said. “Mikala did a really good job. The seniors really did a good job. Paige Miller came in and served great and was setting well in the backup position. Haley obviously did very well. Maranda Knight came in and did a really good job.”
“It’s pretty exciting,” Gross said. “We executed well and got the job done. The key I think was playing good defense, covering the hits, passing it up to the setters so the setters could set and the hitters could hit and find the spots on the floor.”
Abbi Bryant pounded 21 kills, and Jennifer Stinson added 16 kills, four blocks, 11 digs and three aces for the Lancers. Maile Cox had 28 assists.
“They’re really just a well-coached team,” Case said. “They have two great players in Abbi Bryant and Jennifer Stinson. They’re playing awesome, so we really feel good about our win.”
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