The Oskaloosa Indians and the #15 Norwalk Warriors were two evenly matched teams on paper prior to last night’s game; after the game, they can be called evenly matched on the court, too.
The Indians and Warriors met for a Little Hawkeye Conference duel last night and the game began in a dead heat. The two teams went back and forth in a tightly contested opening set, but the Indians, after being on the set point 25-24, couldn’t put the Warriors away, and Norwalk won it in extra points 28-26.
Oskaloosa responded to the heartbreak with a terrific performance in the second set. The Indians led 12-9 midway through the set before going on a 10-2 tear and cruising their way to a 25-15 win to make the set count even.
In the third set, the pendulum swung back in Norwalk’s direction. They opened the set on a 7-0 run and the Indians could never fully dig themselves out of that hole, bringing it to within two points late at 20-18 before the Warriors rallied for 5 consecutive points to go up 2-1 on a 25-18 win.
The fourth set saw the Indians face defeat, but in a set that was just as thrilling as the opener, the Indians came through. After Norwalk was on match point 24-23, Osky rattled off back-to-back-to-back points to win 26-24 and send the game to the make-or-break fifth set.
The final set of the night was back-and-forth with the two teams tied at 9-9 before the Warriors snatched the momentum back and enjoyed a 4 point run; it ended with the Warriors winning the fifth set 15-11 and the game 3-2.
Oskaloosa (7-5) travels to Southeast Polk for a tournament on Saturday. Norwalk (8-3) will host Newton next Tuesday.