St. Cloud, MN - The RCTC Yellowjacket volleyball team thought that they were poised for a great season, and if the opening weekend is any indication, they thought correctly. Despite it being very early in the year the Yellowjackets appeared in mid-season form as they rolled through their four matches at the MCAC Crossover tournament this weekend. The Jackets, not only went 4-0 in the event, but the did so without dropping a set, winning all 4-0 matches by 3-0 scores.
On day one the Jackets opened by downing Hibbing Community College. The Jackets were lead by returning All-American Carrie Rutledge with 21 kills and a .581 hitting percentage. Not to be outdone was transfer Hayley Dessner who added 10 kills without an error and hit .588. Mollie Kleist and AnnMarie Jalmasco were also perfect offensively with 6 and 4 kills respectively and zero hitting errors. As a team the Jackets hit a whopping .521 with Brekkin McCready guiding the offense with 40 of the Jackets 42 assists. Kate Bade lead the Jackets with 10 digs in the match.
Match two was a highly anticpated match between the MCAC's two representatives to last year's national tournament and teams ranked 3rd and 4th in the nation in the DIII pre-season poll. Once again it was RCTC earning the win and the sweep over #3 ranked Central Lakes. Rutledge and Dessner lead the way with 16 and 15 kills respectively. McCready had 43 assists in the win as the Jackets as a team hit at a .282 clip. The Jackets defense came up big in the match as they averaged 21 digs per set, with McCready leading the way with 17. Libero Kate Bade had 14, while Dessner added 11 and Rutledge had 9.
On day two of the tournament the Jackets swept Northland and Mesabi to end 4-0. Stats for those two matches will be coming soon!
Despite the four wins, Coach Amber Zitzow's club still has a lot to work-on. "We played very well, especially for the opening weekend, but we know we have a lot of work to do before the conference season starts. This team has some lofty goals and we will need to continue to work and improve every match to reach them by the end of the year."
RCTC next heads to the College of Dupage on August 30 and 31st. RCTC's opponents include NJCAA DIII volleyball powers Rock Valley and Harper College, as well as Bryant & Stratton, and Kishwaukee Community College.