A pair of victories on Saturday for the Midwestern State volleyball team gave them a 4-0 record at the Pittsburg State Regional Challenge in Pittsburg, Kansas. The 3-1 win over St. Mary’s and 3-0 win over Missouri Southern improves the Mustangs overall record to 10-6 on the season.
MSU opened the tournament on Friday with victories over Northwest Missouri and Newman. The victory over Northwest Missouri ended a five game losing streak.
The Mustangs opened the final day of the tournament against St. Mary’s and saw the Rattler’s jump out to a commanding 17-10 lead in the first set. MSU would pull to with four, but a kill by the Rattler’s Kirsten Chapman and Mustangs attack errors gave St. Mary’s the opening set win.
An evenly matched second set would see 10 ties and eight lead changes. Neither team would have more than a two point advantage until Kimberly Jeffrey began a run of four straight service points. The run was capped with a Hillary White kill and a 21-15 MSU lead.
Jeffrey would give the Mustangs a 25-19 win off a set from Kiara Jordan to even the match at 1-1.
The Rattlers built a three point lead three times in the third set, but were never able to pull away. With St. Mary’s leading 20-17, a 8-3 run by Midwestern highlighted by a pair of Shelbi Stewart kills gave the Mustangs a 25-23 set victory.
Another close battle in the fourth set started to lean the Mustangs way after a Caitlin Wallace kill gave the service to Kristan Aduddell. A service ace from the freshman sparked a run of four service points to give MSU a 21-15 advantage. St. Mary’s never caught back up and the match ended on a White kill and a 25-18 set win.
Miranda Byrd led MSU with 11 kills in the match, followed closely by Stewart with 10. Aduddell served up 22 assists for MSU, while Jordan came up with a match high 24 digs.
Karlie Ortega led St. Mary’s with a match high 12 kills, and Allie Murray also led both teams with 36 assists. Melissa Dahle led the St. Mary’s with 16 digs, one of four Rattlers to reach double digits.
MSU would close out the tournament with a 3-0 win over Missouri Southern, but the Lions wouldn’t make the sweep easy.
Missouri Southern would hold a slim lead early, with Elin Skei taking center stage with three kills on the first seven Lions points.
The Mustangs kept MSSU within two points as White led the way with a pair of kills, briefly taking a one point lead at 8-7 on a Brandi Flores kill. The back and forth fight would see five ties from that point before the Mustangs tried to edge away.
Kills from Byrd, White, and Wallace built an 18-15 lead for MSU, but the Lions would strike back as Skei served them to a 20-19 lead.
The Lions would work their way to set point on a Casey Ball kill, but White would tie the set 24-24 to send the set beyond 25 points. Rachel Olinyk would again give the Lions set point, but an MSSU attack error followed by kills from White and Wallace gave the Mustangs a 27-25 comeback victory.
The second set would remain close until Aduddell got the serve with the Lions leading 12-11. Five straight service points from Aduddell off four Lions errors and a Flores kill gave MSU a 16-12 advantage.
Missouri Southern could never fight their way back into the match. MSU would finish off the set on back-to-back kills from Wallace for a 25-18 set win.
The Mustangs would build an early 9-5 lead in the third set on four straight service points from Jeffrey highlighted by a pair of White kills. The Lions would come back to tie the score five times but could never capture the lead.
A Flores kill sparked a short three point run to give MSU a 25-22 set win and a straight set victory.
White would lead the Mustangs with 13 kills in the match, while Jeffrey led with 21 assists. Jordan would lead both teams with 23 digs.
Ball would record a double-double as she led the Lions with a match high 14 kills and shared the team lead with 11 digs. Katie Collins also turned in 11 digs and Sydney Potts led both teams with 30 assists, also turning in a double-double with 10 digs.
Entering the tournament on a five game skid and emerging with a four game winning streak, the Mustangs return home on October 4 to take on Cameron. First serve at D.L. Ligon Coliseum is set for 7 p.m.