Week 1 observations: Nevada and Colo-NESCO volleyball

Joe Randleman
Ames Tribune
Lily Goos

The Nevada and Colo-NESCO volleyball teams opened the season last week.

Nevada, ranked 15th in Class 3A, went 1-4 at the prestigious Jaguar Invitational at Ankeny Centennial Saturday. Colo-NESCO finished 2-4 in the opening week after splitting two matches at the South Hamilton triangular and going 1-3 at the Meskwaki Invitational Saturday in Tama.

Here are the main takeaways for the two teams:

The Jaguar Invite was the perfect early measuring stick for Nevada

For the past several years Nevada has opened the season at a tournament filled with quality 5A and 4A teams to get an early taste of facing elite competition. Saturday was no different. The Cubs defeated Sioux City East, winning set one, 25-23 suffering a 27-25 loss in the second and taking the rally game, 15-6. They fell to Dowling Catholic (21-18, 21-11), Waukee Northwest (21-9, 21-12), Cedar Falls (21-19, 21-19) and Urbandale — losing the first set by a 25-18 score, coming back with a 25-21 victory then suffering a 15-7 loss in the rally game. Cedar Falls is ranked fifth, Urbandale ninth, Dowling Catholic 10th and Sioux City East 12th in 5A.

Colo-NESCO has already matched last year's win total

Izabell Voelker

The Royals defeated Madrid in straight sets (25-17, 25-11) at the South Hamilton triangular and Meskwaki in three sets at the Meskwaki Invite — dropping the first set to the Warriors by a 22-20 score then coming back with 21-6 and 15-12 victories. The Royals are already even with their 2020 win total when they struggled through a 2-21 campaign. The Karissa Rempe era is off to a good start at Colo.

Both teams struggled with serving accuracy 

Nevada was only successful on 82 % of its serves over the weekend. Colo-NESCO wasn't much better at 83 %. Both of those figures must improve for the teams to start piling up more victories. But they have a lot of time to make those corrections and their competition was stiff, especially Nevada's.

Goos is a force

Junior outside hitter Lily Goos had 27 kills over the weekend for Nevada in the face of outstanding competition. Goos also led the team in aces with eight hand was second in digs (32) and blocks (five).

Hendricks is a star in the making

Dakota Hendricks

Freshman defensive specialist Dakota Hendricks had quite the opening week at libero for the Cubs. She stepped right into the fire and didn't flinch a muscle, recording 63 digs — over five per set — an also picked up seven assists, six aces and two kills. Sophomore Mady Gibson also made a strong debut at setter, dishing out 53 assists on Saturday.

Hill and Voelker keep doing their thing for Colo-NESCO

Jenna Hill

Jenna Hill and Izabell Voelker were the top two returning players coming into the season for Colo-NESCO. They showed way during the opening week. Hill had 30 kills against just seven attack errors along 13 digs, six aces and two blocks at outside hitter/middle blocker. Voelker handed out 37 assists and picked up 20 digs, nine aces and eight kills at setter.