Volleyball Takes on Host Kansas Wesleyan and Saint Mary in Salina

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SILOAM SPRINGS, Ark. (September 14, 2013) -- After suffering a pair of difficult defeats to Ozarks (Mo.) and Tabor (Kan.), the Golden Eagles will look to put an end to its current six-game slide on day two of the LaQuinta Inn Invitational when it faces hosts Kansas Wesleyan and Saint Mary (Kan.) today.

In yesterday's action, John Brown took on the Bobcats in a rematch with Ozarks (8-6). JBU received nine kills from sophomore Melissa Bakke and another seven from freshman Molli Pugh, but not a single Golden Eagle was able to land double-digit kills. Freshman Shayna Daniels posted a team-high 15 assists in the losing effort while Courtney Marshall chipped in with a team-leading six digs from the back line.

The Golden Eagles were unable to avoid the sweep, falling 3-0 (20-25, 18-25, 13-25).

In the second match of the day, Tabor, who is receiving votes in the latest NAIA National Poll, had to put up with a revamped effort from the Golden Eagles. However, John Brown came up short in the losing effort, 3-1 (21-25, 23-25, 25-19, 23-25).

JBU stepped up its blocking game, finishing the contests with 13 blocks. Pugh earned a match-high two solo blocks while junior Courtney Marshall, senior Erin McIlroy and Daniels each finished with one apiece.

Both teams combined for 250 attack attempts which forced the back rows to be active. Senior Staci Williamson chipped in a match-high 24 digs while junior Becca Young and Pugh notched 14 and 13 scoops, respectively.

The Coyotes of Kansas Wesleyan enter the day at 9-7 after grabbing two victories in the first day of its own tournament. KWU landed a pair of clean sweeps over Central Methodist (Mo.) and St. Thomas (Texas).

Kansas Wesleyan is led up front by Breanna Schultz's 193 kills (2.92 average per game). The Coyotes have experienced significant contributions from others as five players have eclipsed the 100-kill plateau already this season. On the back line, KWU is paced by two players, Marlene Yang and Brittaney Miller, who have chipped in with 236 and 201 digs, respectively. Kansas Wesleyan uses a lone passer in its rotation, Taylor Elkinton, who has managed 545 assists, averaging 8.26 helpers a game.

Saint Mary has struggled as of late as the Spires have lost six of its last eight matches. However, one of those wins came against SAC opponent St. Gregory's (Okla.) in a 3-0 sweep.

The Spire defensive efforts are led by Allie Massanet's 218 digs (4.64 per game) while Danielle Dowdy runs the offense, dishing out 364 assists (7.58 per game) to date. Finally, Saint Mary's Peyton Pender throws up a strong block, landing 19 solos this season while adding 10 assists at the net.

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