Sept. 3 - Alliance, Ohio - The Bethany College volleyball team dropped two matches on Saturday at the Mount Union Tournament. In game one, they fell to Hope College, 3-2, before falling to preseason-ranked #2 Wittenberg, 3-1.
Senior Dakota McKenzie (Hopewell, Ohio /West Muskingum) was named to the All-Tournament team for her performance.
Bethany took set one 25-23 after a back and forth battle with The Flying Dutchmen. Late in the set, with the score knotted at 21, senior Alexis Castro (Lorain, Ohio/Lorain) collected three straight kills to put the Bison in front and ultimately take the set.
In the second set, Hope came out on top 25-19. After the first three points of the set, Hope led the entire way. McKenzie collected four kills in this set.
In the swing set, Bethany was up to a 16-10 lead before Hope eventually tied it at 21 apiece. From there, the Bison took over to take the third set. In those final four points, Castro tallied a kill along with an Allie Powell (Indianapolis, Ind. /Lawrence Central) service ace. McKenzie picked up two more kills as well, with the second capturing the set.
Hope took the fourth set 25-22 to push Bethany to their second consecutive match that went the distance. At one time in the fourth set, Bethany led by as much as five before the score was 19-17 in favor of the Bison. From there, the Dutchmen went on a four-point run to take the 21-19 lead before winning the set.
Of all the sets, the fifth was the closest the entire way through, with neither teams’ lead reaching more than two points. It was 15-15 until Hope got a kill before the match ended on a Bethany attack error.
In total, Bethany was led offensively by Dakota McKenzie with 20 kills, followed by Castro with 14, and senior Dylana McKenzie with 14 kills. Powell led the Bison with 40 assists along with her 11 digs.
Defensively, freshman Maggie Merren (Oregon, Ohio / Clay) led the team with 18 digs, followed closely behind by sophomore Reilly Parker (Irwin, Pa./Norwin) with 16.
In the first set of the second match versus Wittenberg, the Tigers never saw their lead go any higher than three points, winning 25-22. At one point being down 19-17, Bethany got a boost from Parker, who had back-to-back points on a kill and a service ace to tie it at 19. The Bison would eventually tie it at 22 before the Tigers scored the final three points to take the set.
After losing the second set 25-18, Bethany would not let it end in three. The Bison jumped out to an early 4-1 lead, capped off with a service ace by Powell. When Wittenberg would fight back to make it 13-12, the Green and White went on another 4-1 run to put themselves up 17-13 before closing it out and winning 25-21.
The fourth set would go to Wittenberg 25-17 to end the day and tournament for the Bison.
Overall, in the match, the McKenzie sisters led the Bison with 11 and 10 kills, respectively with Castro right behind with nine. Powell led the team in digs with 12 whille Merren tallied 10 in the second match.
On the year, Bethany sits at 2-2. They are back in action next Friday, Sept. 9, when they participate in the Maria French Tournament hosted by Baldwin Wallace. On Friday, they play at 5:30 pm versus Mount Union before capping off the night at 7:30 pm versus Baldwin Wallace