The Concordia (St. Paul) volleyball team spent the past couple of days justifying its No. 1 ranking in NCAA Division II.
The Golden Bears finished a perfect weekend at the Woodbury Volleyball Clash with a sweep of No. 17 Northern State on Saturday afternoon at the Gangelhoff Center. Before that Concordia beat Truman State and No. 5 Western Washington on Friday and No. 17 Northern State on Thursday. Every match was a three-game sweep.
The Golden Bears got stronger as the season-opening tournament went on. They hit .554 on Saturday, committing only three errors with 49 kills on 83 attempts. The .554 matched the second-best mark in program history, set against the University of Mary on Oct. 24, 2009. The only more efficient effort came on Sept. 21, 2002, at MSU Moorhead, when they hit .587.
The defense also contributed its best performance on the season Saturday, holding Northern State to .114 hitting with only 23 kills. Concordia also had an 8-3 advantage in service aces.
Leading the way in the attack were Riley Hanson, Sara Macek and Anna Schlaak as all three finished with at least 10 kills. Hanson put up a match-best 11 kills to go along with three blocks and an ace, and Schlaak contributed 10 kills, six digs and a match-high four aces. Macek was nearly perfect, finishing with 10 kills on only 12 swings for an .833 hitting percentage. That mark would have tied for second in school history had she hit the 15-attempt threshold.
Kasey Williams continued to be a steadying force as the setter as she put up 40 assists and five digs. Emily McDonough hit double-digit digs for the fourth match in a row with 12.