DENVER – Concordia capped the Colorado Premier Challenge with two victories on Saturday. The Golden Bears claimed a 3-1 win against No. 10 Metro State and a 3-1 win in a rematch of the 2011 NCAA National Championship against No. 11 CSU San Bernardino. The Golden Bears improve to 6-1 overall on the year.
In the first match of the day, Concordia defeated host Metro State 3-1 by scores of 22-25, 25-17, 25-12 and 25-21. The first set was closely contested but with the score tied 21-21, Metro State scored four of the next five points for the first win.
In the second the Golden Bears took control early with a 10-1 lead. Metro State had trouble handling the attack of Ellie Duffy, committing nine errors in the first 11 points of the set. Metro State put a run together midway through the set, cutting the deficit to 14-10 and again 19-15, but CU pulled away late for the 25-17 final.
The third set was the most decisive as Concordia allowed just 12 points. In the fourth, CU erased a 4-1 deficit and outscored the Roadrunners 10-2 midway through the set for a 12-7 lead. Trailing 24-17, Metro State tallied four consecutive points, but an attack error resulted in the winning point for the Bears.
Four players recorded double-digit kills – Katie Habeck (12), Duffy (11), Kara Pioske (11) and Cassie Haag (10). Pioske also posted a double-double by adding a team-high 13 digs. Amanda Konetchy made 39 assists.
The outcome was similar as the Golden Bears came out on top of CSU San Bernardino with a 3-1 victory. The Bears won the match by scores of 25-23, 23-25, 25-16 and 25-15.
The first set was kept close with eight ties and three lead changes, but with the score tied 22-22, Concordia went to the heavy-hitting Kayla Koenecke and she responded with three kills for the win.
The second set was all CU early with the momentum slowly shifting to CSU San Bernardino. The Bears got off to a 7-2 lead but the Coyotes got back into the mix with a 9-to-4 run to tie the set at 11 points apiece. The two squads continued to trade blows during the ensuing 18 points and were still tied, 20-20. CSUSB took advantage of three consecutive CU errors, though, and pulled away for the 25-23 win.
In the third set, both teams went back and forth until Concordia pulled away midway through the set. Trailing 10-8, the Golden Bears went on a 7-to-1 run and didn’t look back en route to a 25-16 victory.
CU came from behind again in the fourth and dominated late in the set. The Bears trailed 10-6 but scored the next six points for a 12-10 lead. Later in the set they went on seven-point run and finally put an end to the match on a kill by Ellie Duffy.
Koenecke had an impressive night on offense, converting on 17 of 28 attacks for a .607 attack percentage. She also posted a team-high 16 digs for the double-double. Duffy was also impressive on the attack with 14 kills in 29 attempts (.414). Amanda Konetchy led the squad with 53 assists.