North Platte battled to force a third set but couldn’t earn the first victory of the season Thursday, Aug. 31.
In a matchup with St. Joseph Christian, the Panthers let a lead slip away in the first set, and they couldn’t hold their momentum in the third set, losing 21-25, 25-18, 12-25 at North Platte High School in Dearborn, Mo. The Lions avenged a pair of losses from matchups between the two teams a year ago.
Tatum Green, a freshman, turned in her best performance of the season with 19 assists for North Platte in the loss.
Now 0-6-1 on the season, North Platte opened with leads of 2-0 and 4-1 in the first set, but after ties at 6, 8, 9 and 10, Christian pulled away with a 4-0 run. The Lions eventually stretched the advantage to 23-14, taking advantage of errors with the Panthers struggling to get into their offense.
The second set went the other way with Kelsey Reynolds, a junior, supplying much of the offense on her way to a team-high 10 kills for North Platte. McKenzie Brockhoff, a sophomore, provided a strong service run late in the first set for the Panthers and finished with three blocks, while tying with Green for the team lead with 11 digs.
After winning the second set, North Platte couldn’t muster another strong run of play, losing a fourth straight match. The Panthers’ lone tie came in a two-set pool match with West Platte in the KCI Conference Tournament.
North Platte won four matches a year ago, including two against Christian.