Coming into Thursday night's regular season finale at Hampton-Dumont-CAL, the Clear Lake volleyball team had lost eight-straight matches.
The Lions needed a win to turn things around.
And that's exactly what they got.
Clear Lake rolled through HDC in a 3-0 shutout in North Central Conference play. The conference win secured fourth place for the Lions.
"We had some really good practices and meetings this week, and I felt like a lot of what we talked about, we took on to the court tonight," Clear Lake head coach Heather Johnson said. "So I was very happy with that."
The first set was the closest of the night. The Lions (9-18, 3-3) jumped out to leads of 9-4 and 16-10, but the Bulldogs fought back and tied it at 19 points apiece. The Lions closed it out with a 6-1 run to win the first set, 21-20.
Clear Lake came back with two dominant wins in the next two sets. The Lions controlled the Bulldogs in set wins of 25-11 and 25-15, respectively.
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"Usually we struggle to win in just three," sophomore Xada Johnson said. "Usually we go to four or five sets, so I think this is definitely going to help us build confidence to go into the regional game."
For the Bulldogs (0-7, 3-24), head coach Sarah Miller says her girls still have some work to do before the team's first round regional game on Monday.
"We're still having those little issues where if we make an error, it kind of builds upon itself," Miller said. "We're having a tough time of getting out of that and out of some of the serve-receive. We've got some work to finish out this weekend."
HDC plays at 7 p.m. on Monday at Clarion-Goldfield-Dows. Clear Lake plays at 7 p.m. on Monday at Forest City.
Gunnar Davis covers sports. Reach him via email at Gunnar.Davis@GlobeGazette.com or by phone 641-421-0598.