|October 19, 2013||1st||2nd||3rd||Final|
SPITZNAGLE - 15
STOUT - 1
McCOMBS - 1
DELAND, Fla. – The Lipscomb Lady Bisons volleyball team didn’t just want to win this weekend. The players wanted to make a statement.
They did both in a 3-0 sweep of Atlantic Sun foe Stetson Saturday by scores of 25-16, 25-23 and 25-14. It was the fifth straight match win for the Purple and Gold and only the second home match loss for Stetson this season.
“We wanted to impose our will, impose our power and impose our style of play,” Lipscomb coach Brandon Rosenthal said. “I thought the girls did a great job of that.
“They kind of backed off a little bit in the second set but they found a way to win. The girls came in wanting to send a message. I think in the third set the girls really sent a message.”
The Lady Bisons are 14-6 overall, 8-2 in the conference as they end the first half of the A-Sun portion of the season. Stetson is 15-9, 6-3 in the conference.
“I think the girls were really focused for the whole trip,” Rosenthal said. “I give a lot of credit to the girls and a lot of credit to our coaches, Billy Ebel and Ann Armes. I thought we did a nice job.
“We had read about Stetson’s emphasis on protecting their home court. We also knew we are a tough team to beat. The one way to really respect your opponent is to play as hard as you can. Stetson has had a fantastic season. After watching them play you can see why.”
The Lady Bisons finished with a .449 hitting percentage, the second best match percentage in the history of the program.
Middle blocker Molly Spitznagle appears to be completely recovered from her ankle injury. She tied for the match high in kills with 15 while posting a match-high and career-high .737 hitting percentage.
“Molly gets off the ground so quick,” Rosenthal said. “She definitely changes what we can run in the middle in transition.
“She is a little more physical. She does a nice job. She moves so fast. If we get even the smallest window we can exploit the defense pretty good. We knew all along it was going to be a big thing to get Molly back.”
Middle blocker Jewell Dobson also made 15 kills. She had a .636 hitting percentage.
“Both of our middles create so much more opportunities, not just for themselves but everywhere else,” Rosenthal said. “They couldn’t stop Jewell. They tried everything. She is just too fast.”
Outside hitter Lauren Ford added 14 kills.
Setter Caitlin “Dot” Dotson made 51 assists, her second match in a row with more than 50.
“Dot did a fantastic job all weekend of giving our hitters great opportunities against one-on-one blocks,” Rosenthal said. “They knew it wasn’t about one win. It was about the weekend. We had such an aggressive nature.”
Setter Kayla Ostrom was credited with a team-leading 12 digs. Libero Bri McCombs added 11. Through the first two sets the Lady Bisons trailed Stetson in digs. They finished with 43, a six-dig advantage over the Hatters.
“We addressed that between sets two and three,” Rosenthal said. “Ostrom played great all weekend. One of the things about her is she does not get rattled.
“It is fun to see her play. She got a kill against Stetson. It was good to see her smile and see the girls react to her. She is going to be a tremendous player.”
The Lady Bisons return home Friday to face North Florida at 6:30. Jacksonville visits Saturday for a 1 p.m. match. That match was originally scheduled for 2 p.m. but the starting time was changed this week.