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October 18, 20141st2nd3rd4thFinal
.221Hitting Pct..126
145Total Attacks135
Ford - 21
KillsFOSTER - 12
Ostrom - 44
AssistsWELLER - 28
Thomas - 3
AcesVILLA - 2
McCombs - 19
DigsWELLER - 14
Bradley - 4
Ford - 4
BlocksCONNORS - 7
Volleyball sits atop conference with 3-1 win over Stetson
Saturday, October 18, 2014
Volleyball sits atop conference with 3-1 win over Stetson

DELAND, Fla. – it is all about the team for the Lipscomb Lady Bisons, but outside hitter Lauren Ford put together some outstanding numbers in Florida.

Saturday against Stetson she made a match-high 21 kills and added a .314 hitting percentage for the Lady Bisons. She also was credited with four blocks. It was her second match of the weekend to have 20 or more kills having finished with 20 in the 3-1 win at Florida Gulf Coast Friday.

“This was a good weekend for Lauren,” Lipscomb coach Brandon Rosenthal said. “Stetson was a match where we didn’t play our best but we found a way to win. Lauren got hot and really stayed with it.”

The Lady Bisons leave Florida with sole possession of first place and the only unbeaten record in Atlantic Sun matches after beating Stetson 3-1 Saturday afternoon.

The Lady Bisons are 13-6, 7-0 in the A-Sun. Stetson slips to 13-7, 5-2 in the conference. The Lady Bisons have won their last seven matches. Stetson ended a five-match win streak.

The Lady Bisons won set one 25-14 and lost set two 25-22. After intermission the Lady Bisons came back strong winning set three 25-16 and set four 25-22.

“We entered the day saying we have experience on our side,” Rosenthal said. “We have to continue to call upon that experience in tough times. I thought we did a terrific job coming out of the gates. The experience showed.

“We made a couple of mistakes in set two. I don’t think we played bad. Stetson just played better than us in set two.  They got a three-or-four point lead and we couldn’t break through.”

Rosenthal made no major adjustments at the break. He told his players to continue doing what they were doing.

“I told them we needed to apply more pressure,” Rosenthal said. “We controlled set three. In set four we didn’t have the crisp play we saw in sets one and three.”

Rosenthal never wants to complain about travel, but this weekend’s trip to Florida was a challenging one on two fronts. Fort Myers is the longest conference trip and the stop at Stetson comes after a bus ride to Central Florida with an arrival after midnight. Plus this time around both matches had first place in the A-Sun on the line.

“It is easy to talk about but when you physically go through a trip like this it is hard,” Rosenthal said. “I give credit to Billy Ebel, Ann Armes and Kelsey Ferguson who did a great job of preparing and moving us.

“It is one of those deals everyone has to go though. I am not complaining but it is really, really tough. And there was the pressure of the matches being for first place.”

The Lady Bisons won set one 25-14 and lost set two 25-22. After intermission the Lady Bisons came back strong winning set three 25-16 and set four 25-22.

Right side Brittnay Estes finished with a double-double with 14 kills and 12 digs.

Libero Bri McCombs was credited with a match-high 19 digs. Outside hitter Sophie Kellerman added 18 digs.

The Lady Bisons made 66 digs to Stetson’s 53. They also led in kills with 54 compared with 39 by Stetson.

“Stetson is a scrappy team and we were able to out dig them,” Rosenthal said. “But it is another thing to out dig and out kill a team. That’s a good sign.”


Quick hits:

The Lady Bisons have beaten Stetson 15 matches in row after losing the first ever meeting between the two teams.

Estes opened the season with a triple-double against Creighton and has followed that up with seven double-doubles, including the last three matches.

“Brittnay is really engaged,” Rosenthal said. “Using her out of the back row gives other teams something else to worry about.

“Brittnay is very hard on herself at times. She has done a fantastic job on defense the past couple of weeks. The numbers have been there for her the whole season, but right now we are getting back to her becoming such a force at the net. “

Middle blocker Katie Bradley made a season-and-career high eight kills and also posted a match high .400 hitting percentage. She had the third highest kills total for the Lady Bisons in the Stetson win.

“More than anything with Katie it has been how consistent she has been,” Rosenthal said. “She has had limited opportunities attacking-wise but she is getting more and more. And more than anything she continues to do better with them.”

Outside hitter Brittany Thomas made three service aces, one short of her season high.

Ford has 20 or more kills in six matches this season, including back-to-back efforts against Florida Gulf Coast and Stetson. She has been in double figures in kills in her last five matches. 

Kellerman has finished in double figures in digs in six straight matches, 13 overall this season.


Next up:

The Lady Bisons are back in action at Allen Arena Tuesday night at 6:30 for a non-conference match with Belmont. The two teams have not met the past two seasons despite being located on the same street.

Belmont is 10-11 overall, 6-2 in the Ohio Valley Conference.

“It will be fun to start the rivalry again,” Rosenthal said. “I have been very public about it not being my decision not to play. I have always wanted to play them.

“Tony Howell, a good friend of mine, is their new coach. He also wanted to get the rivalry started again.”