|September 26, 2014||1st||2nd||3rd||4th||Final|
Estes - 1
Thomas - 1
Stout - 1
McCombs - 1
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Lipscomb Lady Bisons didn’t take the easy route on the road to victory in the first Atlantic Sun match of the season.
Facing Northern Kentucky for the fourth straight time in an A-Sun season opener, the Lady Bisons spotted the Norse a 25-21 win in the first set. The Lady Bisons then followed with three set wins by scores of 28-26, 31-29 and 25-20 for the 3-1 match win Friday night.
“You have to give some credit to how hard Northern Kentucky plays and the style they play,” Lipscomb coach Brandon Rosenthal said. “They really make you make the errors.
“In the first set they only had one error. We had five more kills than they did in the first set, but our errors were all at crucial times.”
This was the first time Lipscomb and Northern Kentucky played the conference opener at Allen Arena.
“I thought we did a nice job in sets three and four of settling in,” Rosenthal said. “Northern Kentucky is a team that works hard and they are going to score, for lack of a better term, some cheap points.
“Our girls did a nice job of answering the challenge after set one. Our girls were trying to make a statement in set one. I thought we had so much firepower in set one. We were set up in a good spot. I was just a little concerned with the errors.”
Outside hitter Lauren Ford led the Lipscomb charge with a match-high 23 kills, two short of her career high. She paced the team with a .327 hitting percentage.
“Ford’s numbers are a little bit deceiving,” Rosenthal said. “In set two she really started to get going and we talked about making some adjustments.
“I told Ford, `hey, you have to tell Kayla (Ostrom) to set you the ball’. I told her she had to demand the ball.”
Middle blocker Molly Spitznagle was credited with a career-high 19 kills. She also added six blocks. Spitznagle posted a .325 hitting percentage.
“Setting Molly as much as we did was a deliberate move,” Rosenthal said. “With the scouting report we felt we had an advantage with that.
“We had to remind her to `keep swinging, keep swinging’. She got blocked on couple of balls and a couple of shots were just out. We kept telling her, `hey you are doing great’.”
Right side Brittnay Estes added 13 kills.
“Ford and Estes had seven of our eight errors in set one,” Rosenthal said. “With both of them starting slow it was like,` ugh’. It took them a little bit of time to get going.”
Libero Bri McCombs led Lipscomb with 15 digs followed by Brittany Thomas with a career-high 12 and Ostrom with 10.
Ostrom also had a career high with 59 assists.
“In sets three and four I thought Kayla really settled in,” Rosenthal said. “And Katie Bradley isn’t going to jump out on the stats sheet but she came up with big kills and some big blocks.”
The Lady Bisons raise their record to 7-6, 1-0 in the A-Sun. Northern Kentucky drops to 10-4, 0-1 in the conference.
“Northern Kentucky is a good team,” Rosenthal said. “The next time we play it is going to be a battle. That is what we want.”
- This was the fourth time this season that Ford has made 21 or more kills.
- The Lady Bisons are 5-0 overall against Northern Kentucky
- Thomas has twice finished in double figures in digs this season. She made 10 at Kentucky.
- Ostrom has made 52 or more digs three times this season. This was her fifth double figures finish in digs.
- McCombs has double figures in digs in all 13 matches this season.
- The Lady Bisons are 10-2 in conference openers.
- Lipscomb ended a three-match losing streak. Northern Kentucky ended a four-match winning streak.
The Lady Bisons get to enjoy the rest of the weekend before starting preparation for weekend matches at USC Upstate and Kennesaw State.
They face Upstate at 6 p.m. Oct. 3 and Kennesaw State at 2 p.m. Oct. 4.