FT. MADISON — The stars were seemingly alligning for Mt. Pleasant to pick up its first Southeast Conference win on Tuesday night, against defending SEC co-champin Ft. Madison no less. Mt. Pleasant had won the first set and they were up double-digits in the second, but it all came crumbling down with a Bloodhound Rally.
The Hounds stormed back to steal the second set and then rattled off two more to keep Mt. Pleasant winless in the conference, 16-25, 25-23, 25-19, 25-20.
“It’s a repeat,” coach David Streeter said, referencing blown leads in each of Mt. Pleasant’s other two SEC games. “We get going quick and then everything seems to fall apart, and they don’t seem to know how to rebound yet.”
Mt. Pleasant dominated the first set, putting Ft. Madison on its toes early. The Panthers scored five of the first six in the second and eventually built an 11-point lead, at 18-7, utilizing big kills from Avery Sutter and Maggie Cristoforo along the way.
Ft. Madison scraped back to cut the lead to two points, at 20-22. Mt. Pleasant ended the Bloodhound rally with a point to stretch the lead to 23-20, but Ft. Madison scored the next five to stun the visiting Panthers.
The Bloodhounds flipped the script at the beginning of the third, scoring five of the first six themselves en route to a 25-19 victory.
Mt. Pleasant led early in the second by as much as four points, at 10-6. The Bloodhounds came back to tie it 13-13 and eventually take a three-point lead, at 17-14, forcing a Panther timeout. Mt. Pleasant cut the lead back all the way to one, at 21-20, but the Hounds closed it out with four-straight points.
“It’s encouraging, and also frustrating,” says Coach Streeter about seeing his team lose three-straight tight SEC games. “It’s good to see, but, it’s frustrating.”
Cristiforo led the squad with nine kills. Avery Sutter had eight kills and eight blocks. Ralyn Seberg finished the night with 19 assists. April Simon had 10 digs.
Mt. Pleasant is now 3-13 overall and 0-3 in the SEC. They’ll next play in the Ottumaw tournament on Saturday, Sept. 21.