FAIRBANKS-Even though they started the game a bit flat the Rams were able to come away with their 10th consecutive win tonight in Boileau Hall. Monroe (10-0, 5-0 Aurora) held off the upstart Eielson Ravens in four sets 25-17, 25-22, 20-25, 25-16.
The test for the Rams came in the middle sets. Monroe took the first set 25-17 then Eielson made their move. The Ravens were able to hit in creases to force the Rams to make decisions which gave them a 6-2 lead to start the set. After a Monroe timeout the Rams rallied and took their first lead of the game off a Jenna Otis ace for a 16-15 advantage. It was tight late in the set when Eielson senior Larissa Franklin's kill brought tied at 21-21. But Monroe capatilize on Eielson errors and came away with a 25-22 in the second game.
Set three was a roller coaster for both teams. It looked like the Rams were ready for a sweep jumping out to a 7-0 lead behind junior setter Andi Clark's serving. Clark served the those first seven points for Monroe. Eielson responded with a huge 15-0 run generated by team captain Katie Browder's serving. Browder served nine straight points including three aces. Eielson led 15-7 before the Rams called a timeout. Monroe came out of the short break with a charge. Eielson was clinging to a 16-17 lead after an 8-2 run by Monroe. Franklin had some timely playmaking for Eielson who went on to get the third set 25-20.
Monroe was not phased by the Ravens 5-2 lead in the fourth game and went on a 7-1 run to gain control with a 12-3 lead. The Rams stayed on top and won the final set 25-16.
The Rams go on the road to play the Delta-Junction Huskies this Thursday.
"We have more potential than that and that should have been our victory but we came out a little flatter than they did," Eielson head coach Dana Baugh said.
Clark feels her team is focused given that they won a conference game short handed.
"I felt really good, it shows that we are a team like were not just depending on just one player," Clark said.
Rams head coach Dave Obermeyer believes the serving enabled them to regroup after the dropping the third set.
"I just told them before we've brought our storm before us and we got to come out on fire and start it off with our serving and that's where... I think we pulled it all together."