By Laura Bustos Martinez
The No. 7 Missouri Valley College men’s volleyball team played in the Viking Invitational on February 24 and 25 at the Burns Athletic Complex. The Vikings started play against No. 8 Robert Morris falling in five games, but earned a three game victory against Campbellsville University. Missouri Valley continued play Saturday afternoon against No. 1 Park University falling to the Pirates in four games, but took a four-game win against Cincinnati Christian University.
In the Robert Morris match, the Vikings fell by scores of 29-27, 25-23, 21-25, 19-25, 6-15.
Game one was close during the first stages of the game, having both teams tied at 11-11. The Eagles with five-straight points took a momentary 20-17 lead, as the Vikings took game one, 29-27.
Missouri Valley took early control in game two. The score was 7-4 when the Eagles took three-straight points to tie the game at 7-7. Both teams traded points going back and forth. However, Missouri Valley used a kill and an error from Robert Morris to win the game, 25-23, and take 2-0 lead in games.
The third game was close through the firsts points. The score was tied at 5-5 when a kill from the Vikings followed by an error from Robert Morris gave Missouri Valley a 7-5 lead. However, the Eagles came back winning four-straight points to take a 9-7 lead. Robert Morris enlarged the lead with three-straight points making the score 22-16. The Vikings could not came back and a kill from Robert Morris helped them to take game three, 25-21.
In game four, Robert Morris won five-straight points to take a 6-2 lead. The Vikings added points just from Eagles errors and let Robert Morris take game four, 25-19, deciding the match on game five.
Game five started with Missouri Valley winning the first point on a kill by Martins. However, Robert Morris responded with six-straight points. The Vikings tried to shorten the deficit but Robert Morris ended the game with two-straight points to win game five, 15-16.
Missouri Valley later sweep Campbellsville by scores of 25-22, 25-20, 25-14.
The first game was close through the firsts points. The game was tied at 11-11 when the Vikings with a kill and an attack error from the Tigers recovered the lead. Later in the game, MVC won three-straight points to hold a 17-13 lead. On the final stage of the game, Campbellsville won four-straight points but a kill helped Missouri Valley to take game one, 25-22.
The Vikings won four-straight points at the beginning of game two. Campbellsville later took two of the next three points, but Missouri Valley responded with three-straight points to hold an 8-2 lead. The Tigers could not recover from the deficit and Missouri Valley took a 25-20 win in game two, going up 2-0 in games.
The first three points in game three were for the Vikings. Missouri Valley later in the game won six-straight points, making the score 19-7. Campbellsville shortened the deficit with three-straight points, but the Vikings responded with another three-straight points. Missouri Valley finally won game three 25-14.
Leading the way in the win for Missouri Valley was Travis Middleton with 14 kills, and finished with a .722 hitting percentage. Luis Garate added 11 kills, four digs and finished with a .300 hitting percentage.
The Vikings later lost against No. 1 Park University by scores of 25-20, 22-25, 23-25, 22-25.
The first game was close through the firsts points having both teams tied at 5-5. Missouri Valley later took four-straight points. However, Park responded tiding the score at 11-11. The Vikings later manage a 25-20 win in game one.
The second game started with the Vikings taking an early advantage winning the first two points. The Pirates took the next point of the game, but Missouri Valley held a 4-1 lead winning the next two points. The Pirates came back from the early deficit and won game two 25-22.
Missouri Valley took control early in game three, winning six-straight points. The Pirates managed to shortened the deficit. The Vikings added points to their score but were not enough as Park won game three 25-23, taking a 2-1 lead in games.
Game four started with Park taking the first two points of the game. However, Missouri came back tiding the game at 2-2. The Vikings later in the game took a 12-9 lead with six-straight points, but the Pirates shortened the deficit to 12-11, and later tied the game at 13-13. Missouri Valley couldn’t recover from the deficit and Park ended the game with two-straight points to win game four, 25-22.
Missouri Valley finished the Viking Invitational earning a win against Cincinnati Christian by scores of 22-25, 25-15, 25-19, 25-22.
Game one was close, both teams were trading points. The Vikings had a 2-1 lead. However, Cincinnati Christian responded with five-straight points. Missouri Valley later in the game won three-straight points to shorten the deficit to 14-12. MVC could not reach the Eagles and Cincinnati Christian game one 25-22.
The Vikings took control early in game three, winning six-straight points. The Vikings had the control during the game and won game two 25-15.
Game three was tied during the first stages. Cincinnati Christian later won four-straight points to take a 9-5 lead. However, seven-straight points helped Missouri Valley to later take game three, 25-19, going 2-1 in games.
The fourth game featured both teams tied at 18-18. Cincinnati Christian took the lead winning one point. However, Missouri Valley responded with three-straight points taking a 21-19 lead. The Eagles shortened the deficit to 21-20, but three-straight points from the Vikings helped the Vikings to hold a 24-20 lead, and later win game four, 25-22.
Luis Garate was leading the way for Missouri Valley, having 18 kills and finishing with a .333 hitting percentage.
“I think that the Invitational has been something positive for us,” Garate said. “We have realized that we have a good team and that we are capable of playing at a high level, as we have very good players.”
“Now, it’s time to get ready for the next matches and get good results,” he added. “We are a good team that when we play together and everybody support each other, we can get a victory in each game and we should always maintain it.”