Volleyball Drops Road Match to Southwestern A.G.

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WAXAHACHIE, Texas (October 10, 2014) -- The John Brown volleyball team fell in three sets at Southwestern A.G. (Texas) on Friday Night (Oct. 10) as the Lions used a 3-0 (11-25, 21-25, 18-25) sweep to down JBU in its first match of a two-day Texas road swing.

Junior outside hitter Audrey Dearien led the Golden Eagles with nine kills while junior outside hitter Tiffany Hunnicutt added seven terminations. Junior middle hitter Libby Blasingame had a match-leading one solo block and three assists on the night. Senior defensive specialist Becca Young continued to pile onto her team-leading dig count with another 17, a match-high, while sophomore setter Shayna Daniels added 13. Daniels (11) and freshman setter Alyssa Arnold (9) totaled 20 of JBU’s 22 assists in the loss.

The Lions jetted out to an 8-3 lead in the first set, powered by a pair of aces and two Golden Eagle errors. A Hunnicutt kill ended the rally, but SAGU powered forward to a 14-6 lead. Holding a 17-9 lead, Southwestern A.G. rode the serving of Lacy Stinebaugh to a 6-0 run, building a 23-9 advantage. Sophomore middle hitter Molli Pugh’s termination ended the rally, but the hosts used a .231 hitting percentage, compared to JBU’s .091 percent, taking set one, 25-11.

John Brown’s hitting woes continued in the second stanza. SAGU enjoyed an early 11-2 lead after a trio of kills from Mollie McBride and three Katie Ryan service aces. Despite the eight-point deficit, back-to-back Dearien kills kick-started a small comeback as John Brown rallied on an 8-4 run, fueled by four Lion errors. Down 18-12, JBU benefited from four SAGU errors before Dearien and senior outside hitter Vanessa Uhrhahn’s consecutive kills rallied the visitors all the way back to within two, 21-19. However, a 4-2 set-ending rally gave the Lions a 25-21 win and a 2-0 lead in the match.

The third set featured JBU’s first lead of the match, but 10 attack errors in the set was too much for the Golden Eagles to overcome. Down 4-1, three Dearien terminations began a 9-3 rally, boosting JBU into a 10-7 lead. The visitors would hold that lead until 15-14, but a Dearien attack error knotted the score at 15 and allowed SAGU to take the next point on a Faith Hardin kill. With a 16-15 advantage in hand, the Lions wouldn’t let go of the lead for the remainder of the set as the margin grew to as many as seven.

The Lions hit at a .186 percent pace on the match while holding John Brown to its lowest offensive output of the season, a .035 hitting percentage, including a -.024 mark in the third set. SAGU also rode 10 service aces, four by Ryan, to a 10-2 advantage in aces. The Golden Eagles had six team blocks compared to the Lions’ five.

McBride had a match-high 11 kills for SAGU (10-10, 4-4 SAC) while Caitlin Paschall dug 10 JBU attacks and added a match-best 25 assists in the win. JJ Abbott also threw up two solo blocks.

The Golden Eagles won’t have much time to regroup as they face Texas Wesleyan tomorrow (Oct. 11) at 1 p.m. in Ft. Worth, Texas. The Rams are coming off a 3-1 upset win over Oklahoma City tonight at the Sid Richardson Center.

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