Newell Fonda got off to a fast start, but top-ranked and defending champion Ankeny Christian bounced back to defeat the Mustangs in four sets Tuesday evening in a 1A state opening-round match in Coralville.
Newell Fonda took the opening set 25-20. The Mustangs built an early three-point lead. Ankeny Christian took their first lead at 7-6 and were up by as many as three. Newell Fonda went back in front 14-13 as part of a 6-0 run. The Mustangs led by as many as five down the stretch. Newell Fonda’s opening set win was the first time Ankeny Christian dropped a set since September 23rd, snapping a run of 16 consecutive matches won in straight sets. This was only the 9th set they’ve lost this season.
Ankeny Christian rebounded and never trailed for the remainder of the match. The Eagles took the 2nd set 25-11. Ankeny Christian led by as many as eight in the 3rd set. The Mustangs scored five in a row as Ankeny Christian was trying to close out the set, and they ultimately did at 25-21. The 4th set score was 25-14.
Newell Fonda co-head coach Arick Loew spoke after the match.
Ankeny Christian finished with a .203 kill efficiency, while Newell Fonda’s was .086. Kinzee Hinders led the Mustangs with 15 kills and Kierra Jungers had eight. Jaicee Vanderhoff had 14 assists and McKenna Sievers had 12. Newell Fonda had four ace serves. Ankeny Christian has the most aces in the state, averaging 5.5 per set coming into State, but were held to eight against the Mustangs.
Ankeny Christian’s 27th straight victory puts them at 37-3. They’ll play BCLUW this (Wed) evening in the state semifinals. The other 1A semifinal has Boyden Hull playing Holy Trinity Catholic.
Newell’s Fonda’s season ends at 21-9, as their 11-match win streak is snapped. The Mustangs say farewell to seniors Jungers, Sievers, and Isabel Bartek.