Oct. 9 – BETHANY, W. Va. – The Bethany College volleyball team got a great game from Westminster College, but used a solid all-around effort to come from a 2-1 deficit, to defeat the Titans, 3-2 (25-21, 21-25, 19-25, 25-17, 15-12).
Game one saw just one lead change as the Titans posted the first point of the contest. However back-to-back kills by Breana Harris (Severn, Md./Old Mill) and Lynsie Mandt (Columbus, Ohio/Worthington Kilbourne) put the Bison back on top and they never looked back. Westminster was able to pull the score to even three times and keep the game close, with the largest lead being a four-point advantage (16-12) on a kill by Dakota McKenzie (Hopewell, Ohio/West Muskingum). McKenzie would also notch the game winner as the Bison took game one, 25-21.
Westminster made things tough for the Bison as the Titans would go on to take set two, 25-21, and set three, 25-19 to push the Bison to the verge of their first home loss and PAC loss of the season. However, the Bison would have an answer.
In game four, Bethany seemed to come out of the gate refocused and quickly raced out to an 8-2 lead, getting three kills by Harris in the process. The Titans would cut the lead to as close as four (14-10) before the Bison put some distance between them, forcing a game five by taking the fourth, 25-17.
In set five, Harris was at it again as she posted four kills in the first six points of the pivotal game, helping Bethany out to a 6-3 lead. The Bison would then have an answer for every Titan point, not allowing Westminster to tie the game. With the score at 12-11, the Bison finished off the comeback with kills from Mandt and Dylana McKenzie (Hopewell, Ohio/West Muskingum) to take game five, 15-12, and the match, 3-2.
In the contest, the Bison received big games from a number of different players. Dylana McKenzie led all Bison with 14 kills while making just two errors in 29 attempts (.414). Harris added 13 kills while Mandt notched 12. Mackenzie Lauber (Mansfield, Ohio/Madison-Mansfield) and Dakota McKenzie each came away with 11 while Alexis Castro (Lorain, Ohio/Lorain) rounded out the kills total with seven.
Lauber had arguably one of her best all-around performances of the season as she notched her first-career triple-double, collecting 48 assists and 10 digs to go along with her 11 kills. This was the first triple-double by a Bison this season.
Mandt, who was recently named the ECAC South Corvias Player of the Week for her great performances last week, followed up with another stellar performance. The junior outside hitter notched her second-consecutive double-double, finishing the day with 12 kills and 20 digs.
The Bison have now won 10-straight games in the PAC and have captured 11 of their last 12 games overall. Bethany will hope to carry that momentum into this weekend when they travel to Grand Rapids, Michigan to participate in the Midwest Invitational, hosted by Calvin College and Hope College.
Bethany will open the weekend on Friday against The University of Chicago who will come into the day ranked #18 in the country by the AVCA. The contest is scheduled for a 4 p.m. start.