Bison Volleyball Poised for Run at ECAC Title after PAC Championship Defeat

By DYLAN BLASCHAK

TOWER ONLINE CO-EDITOR

 

Bump, Set, Spike! The Bethany College women’s volleyball team had another terrific season with an overall record of 27-9 and a 17-1 record in the PAC Conference.

The Bison are a very young team, led by just three juniors, and mainly comprised of freshman. Once again the Bison rolled over PAC opponents for a third consecutive year, greatly due to the superb play of the team’s young talent and experienced leaders.

This past weekend the lady Bison hosted the 29th Annual Championship Tournament as the number one overall seed and faced off against the number four seed Westminster Titans. The lady Titans wrapped up the 2013 season with an overall record of 25-8, and a PAC record of 12-6.

The lady Bison and Titans took the court early Friday evening with a spot in the championship game on the line. The Bison came out amped up and ready to go, jumping out to an early lead against the Titans, quickly establishing their dominance.  The Titans gathered their composure towards the middle of the set and were able to fend of the lady Bison, however it was a futile attempt as the lady Bison pulled out the first set 25-21.

The second set did not go as easily for the lady Bison as the Titans seized the momentum and were able to take the second set 25-21, behind a strong defensive effort. However, the third set was a rout in favor of the lady Bison, dominating the lady Titans 25-14. The front line of the lady Bison in Breana Harris, Dakota & Dylana Mckenzie were having a monster game accounting for 37 of the teams 49 total kills, to this point. The trio of girls, which are very versatile outside hitters and middle blockers, are a dominant force for the lady Bison and have been a staple of the offense and defense all season.

The lady Bison were able to fend off the talented Westminster Titans winning the match 3-2, and advancing to the championship game the next day against the Thomas Moore Saints, who are the number two seed in the tournament.

The lady Bison had their hands full during the match against a very talented Thomas Moore team, with an overall record of 21-5 and 15-3 in PAC play. The lady Saints established their dominance early in the first set, winning 25-21, despite a late comeback attempt from the lady Bison.

After the loss in the first set, the lady Bison knew they would be in for a full five set match, and the second set would be no easier as Thomas Moore dominated the court once again taking the set 25-18. Bethany struggled early on in the match as their trio of stars were unable to establish their dominance.

However, the lady Bison would prove to be victorious in the next two sets winning 25-19 and 25-23. It was during these two matches that Harris and the McKenzie twins would finally come alive and establish a punishing net-front presence, allowing the lady Bison to gain some vital points and momentum.

Unfortunately the lady Bison fell short in the final set, as Thomas Moore stormed the court following a 15-9 victory, and a 3-2 score in the match. It was a heartbreaking loss for the lady Bison, who worked so hard over the course of the season to obtain home court advantage, only to have victory slip through their fingers.

All is not lost though, the lady Bison are set to host the ECAC South Region tournament this Saturday, November 16th starting at 10am in the Hummel Field House. Come out and show your support for the lady Bison as they battle against McDaniel College.

 

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