Nic Hutchinson

Nic Hutchinson
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Lady Lakers earn sole ownership of GRAC title

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Lake Land College Volleyball / photo: D. Brasel
INA--WAUGH GYMNASIUM--A straight sets win by the Lake Land College Lady Lakers earned the team sole ownership of the Great Rivers Athletic Conference title Wednesday night in their final conference match.

With their Magic Number down to one, Lake Land couldn't depend on all three teams trailing them in the GRAC standings by only one match to lose and give Lake Land a free title regardless of their own outcome. Not only would such an occurrence be unlikely, it was impossible, as two of the trailing teams where pitted against each other, meaning at least one of them would come away with a win.

The only option for the Lady Lakers to rise to the top of the GRAC heap as the sole champions was to win their own match.

They did.

In straight sets, the Lady Lakers defeated a much improved Rend Lake College squad, whose only lull was at the outset of the match, when they trailed Lake Land in the first set, 8-1. After a quick comeback, the entire balance of the evening's match was closely played, many times bouncing back and forth between a point of each other as well as multiple ties.

Lake Land pulled away slightly at the end of each set, with the scores, 25-21, 25-19, and 25-19.

The Lady Lakers finish their regular season with an 18-12 overall record, and an 8-2 conference record to claim the GRAC title.

The NJCAA Division I Volleyball Region 24 Championship is next, held Saturday at Brewer Gymnasium on the campus of John A. Logan College. First serve is set for 1:00 p.m. CDT.

Lake Land has earned the number one seed and so will play the championship match at the aforementioned location and time versus the winner of a Friday night match, also as Brewer Gymnasium, between the number two seed, John A. Logan College Lady Volunteers, and the number three seed, Kaskaskia College Blue Angels.

Lake Land's Saturday match will air on Lakerball Radio, with a media player available on the Lakerball blog. Listeners can also experience the match on their smartphones (iOS or Android), using the free Lakerball Radio app.

The winner of the Regionals earns the chance at playing in the NJCAA Division I District K Championship, held Nov. 5 in Missouri versus the winner of their Regionals, the winner of which earns a berth in the National Finals, held in mid-November in Casper, Wyoming.

There's a related article about the Lady Lakers volleyball team in the online version of  JG-TC, here.

Note: Match statistics were not available at post time.

 
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