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Sept. 1 - DELAWARE, Ohio – The Bethany College volleyball team began the 2007 campaign this weekend at the Ohio Wesleyan University Tournament, where they took seventh place overall with a 1-3 record.

After starting the weekend with 3-0 losses to Transylvania (Ky.) University, Ohio Wesleyan, Lake Erie (Ohio) College, the Bison scored a 3-1 triumph (30-20, 26-30, 30-23, 30-21) over LaRoche (Pa.) College in the seventh place match for their first win under new head coach Courtney Kline.

In their first match Friday night, the Bison were defeated by Transylvania 10-30, 13-30, 16-30. Senior Lauren Spegal (Bethel Park, Pa.) led the Bison with eight kills and 11 digs, while junior Kim McKay (Pittsburgh, Pa./North Hills) had nine assists and freshman Lindsay Olson (Rices Landing, Pa./Jefferson-Morgan) recorded six digs.

Bethany completed their first night at the tournament with a 14-30, 27-30, 18-30 setback to the host team. Spegal again led the way with 11 kills, 13 digs and three aces, while McKay gave out 23 assists. Freshman Emily Stewart (Latrobe, Pa./Greater Latrobe) chipped in with seven kills, while freshman Sarah Olson (Rices Landing, Pa./Jefferson-Morgan) also had double figures in digs with 10.

On Saturday, BC wrapped up pool play against Lake Erie, who sent the Bison to defeat by scores of 25-30, 20-30, 28-30. McKay had 20 assists in the match, while the offense was spearheaded by Spegal and Stewart with seven kills each. Senior Michelle Fowler (Mather, Pa./Jefferson-Morgan) added three kills and five aces, while Sarah Olson led the defensive efforts with 14 digs.

The Bison’s improvement through the tournament continued in their final match against LaRoche. After the teams split the first two games, BC claimed the final two to record the 3-1 victory. Bethany’s efforts were once again paced by Spegal, who hammered down 19 kills and added 11 digs in the win. McKay handed out a weekend-high 30 assists, while Bethany’s serving included four aces from Lindsay Olson and three from junior Mandy Kaufman (Glen Dale, W.Va./John Marshall). Defensively, Sarah Olson also had a weekend-best with 20 digs.

For the tournament, Spegal compiled 45 kills, which moved her into fourth place all-time at Bethany. She now has 941 for her career, moving past Holly Sensenich’s 912. Next on the list for Spegal is Shae Baxter in third place with 969 kills. The all-time Bethany mark is held by Kelly Sitko, who registered 1,197 during her career.

The Bison return to the court Monday, when they travel to Franciscan (Ohio) University for a 7 p.m. match. Bethany will compete in another tournament next weekend when they play two matches Friday and two more Saturday at the Penn State Behrend Invitational.