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Bronco volleyball sweeps Western Texas College

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Katarzyna Niderla spikes a ball in between two Western Texas defenders Wednesday night. (Peter Dindinger Photo/NMMI Sports Press)

Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

By Peter Dindinger
NMMI Sports Press

It was a battle for sole possession of second place in the Western Junior College Athletic Conference on Wednesday night at the Godfrey Athletic Center.

In front of an electric crowd, the New Mexico Military Institute Bronco volleyball team did not disappoint at home, notching a sweep of the Western Texas College Westerners, 25-13, 25-16, 25-13.

Dating back to March 10 of last spring, NMMI (15-4, 3-1) is now 12-0 at home.

The Broncos will travel to Midland College at 2 p.m. CDT Saturday. A win for the Broncos will have them tied for the top spot in the conference.

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“We need this week and we need to be successful. When we pass and serve, we’re really hard to beat,” said NMMI head coach Shelby Forchtner.

In the opening set, NMMI jumped out to a 5-1 lead after Marian Ovalle tallied the first kill of the match. That lead grew to 13 points in the middle of the set.

The Broncos continued their dominance with a 22-9 lead until the Westerners chiseled down the deficit to 10 points. A kill by Darcy Dodd helped NMMI eventually take the first by 12.

With the intensity high, the Broncos continued their consistency into the second set by taking a quick 7-1 lead. The dynamic duo of Ovalle and Katarzyna Niderla laid down some clutch kills during the big run. Dana Manu extended NMMI’s lead to seven with a kill later in the game.

A service ace by Ovalle and a kill by Barbara Guedes Rezende made the score 11-3 in the middle of the set.

Western Texas (10-14, 2-2) then closed the gap to trail by two as it forced the Broncos to play out of system. NMMI got back on track to extend its lead to six.

Manu tallied a kill during the final stretch of the set to help the Broncos take a 2-0 lead in the match.

Niderla landed the first kill of the third set.

The Broncos never trailed at any point during the match. Kills by Manu and Rezende gave NMMI a slight 8-4 lead. Megan Waghorn came up with a crucial service ace later on to help extend the lead to eight. A tandem block by Niderla and Ovalle put the Broncos up by 10.

MaryJane Vanisi came away with the final kill of the night that sent her team into a celebration with the 12-point third-set win to notch the sweep.

Rising up to the No. 11 spot in the latest NJCAA Division I rankings, the Broncos are improving each and every day as they aim for the top spot in the conference.

“These last two games (we) have just played with a lot of intensity,” Forchtner added. “We play a better game and (have) a better tempo the more aggressive that we are.

“We know exactly what we need to do and if we stick to that game plan over and over again we’re hard to beat just because we’re a very balanced team.”

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