The Faribault Falcons volleyball season came to a crashing halt in Rochester tonight with a 4 set Rochester Century win in the opening round of the Section 1AAA Tournament.  Scores were 26-24, 25-14 Century wins in the first two sets, Faribault won the third set 25-21 and the Panthers the fourth set 25-21.

The absence on the floor of junior setter Bennett Wolff due to a leg injury was very evident.  All season the Falcons have had slow starts but that was not the case in the first set at Century High School.  Faribault jumped out to a 5-1 lead but errors did creep in.  I had the team with 11 errors in the first set to Century's 7 miscues.

There were no seniors on this year's team so hopefully everyone will be back next year for Faribault.  Rochester Century was led by 5'9 junior outside hitter Ashlyn Meincke with crucial kill after crucial kill for her team.  My unofficial statistics had her with 19 kills and just 4 hitting errors.  Most of her kills bounded off the tape at the top of the net.

Century was the #8 seed and Faribault the #9 seed in Section 1AAA.

Panthers junior right side hitter 5'8 Ella Wieneke unofficially added 8 kills.  5'10 freshman Paige Decker had 5 kills and no errors for Century and their 6'1 junior middle hitter Amelia Bowe 6 kills, 3 blocks.

The hitting percentage for the night for Faribault was .161 with 37 kills in the four sets and 18 hitting errors.  The Falcons also had 9 service errors.

Juniors Payton Evenstad and Olivia Bauer led Faribault's offensive attack  with 14 and 12 kills respectively.  The Falcons official statistics had Bauer with a .344 hitting percentage and Evenstad .hit .235. They were named our KDHL/Faribault State Farm Insurance agents Faribault players of the game along with Meghan Swanson who led the team with 5 blocks.

At times the Faribault block was awesome with freshman Otaifo Esenabhalu and Evenstad chippping in with 4 blocks each.  Faribault finished the night with 12 total blocks.

Falcons Junior libero Hanna Cunniff led the team with 16 digs, Evenstad added 12 digs.

The Malecha's Auto Body of Faribault "Crunch Time Hit of the Match" award went to Evenstad who pulverized the ball on multiple occassions.

Faribault ends their 2019 season with a 13-14 record.

Rochester Century is now 14-13 and travels to Northfield Friday night to face top seed and Class AAA #2 rated Northfield.

The Raiders vs. Century match will be broadcast on KDHL Radio, 920 AM and is available worldwide on the FREE KDHL app.  Coverage begins 6:45 p.m.

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