Belles Fend Off Hornets for First MIAA Win of Season
- Meaghan Gibbons had a double-double with 14 kills and 12 digs while posting a .419 attack percentage.
- Colleen Kilgallon added 10 kills.
- Leah Buck had eight kills with one error on 13 attempts for a .538 attack percentage.
KALAMAZOO, Mich. - The Saint Mary's volleyball team powered their way to a 3-0 (25-14, 25-16, 25-22) conference win over Kalamazoo on Wednesday night.
The Belles jumped out to a 6-1 lead in the opening set before the Hornets rattled off a big run to make it 6-5. The teams traded points to make it 7-6, but Saint Mary's used a quick scoring spurt to gain an 11-6 advantage. Kalamazoo pulled within four points at 11-7 and 12-8. The Belles, however, pulled away with an 8-2 run a short while later prior to claiming the 25-14 first set.
Saint Mary's won the first seven points of the second set and never trailed in the stanza. Kalamazoo made a late push as the Belles called a timeout at 23-16 to stop the rally. Saint Mary's closed out the set with a kill by Clare McMillan and a Hornets error with a 25-16 score.
The third set was tightly played from start to finish as both sides fought back and forth early on for points. With the score at 7-7, the host Hornets made a big run on their way to a 14-8 lead - their largest of the match. The Belles were resilient in their efforts and responded with a 7-2 run to make it a 16-15 affair. Consecutive kills by Meaghan Gibbons a few points later tied the score at 17-17 before Gibbons gave the Belles an 18-17 lead. The set saw ties at 19-19, 20-20, and 21-21 before Kalamazoo claimed a 22-21 lead. The Belles quickly turned the tables and closed out the sweep with consecutive aces by McKenzie Todd and a Hornets ball handling error to end the match at 25-22 in the third set.
The Belles had 18 more kills on the night than the Hornets. Saint Mary's hit a nearly unstoppable .613 in the first set alone with 19 kills on 31 attempts with no errors to set the tone early.
Meaghan Gibbons had a double-double with 14 kills and 12 digs while posting a .419 attack percentage to help pace the Belles. Colleen Kilgallon added 10 kills, and Leah Buck had eight kills with one error on 13 attempts for a .538 attack percentage. Kaylin Szucs led the Belles with 17 digs, and McKenzie Todd tallied 10 digs and a solo block on the night. Alexis Grady had 19 assists, and Clare McMillan registered a double-double with 19 assists and 11 digs.
The Belles (2-6, 1-2 MIAA) have a break from conference competition this weekend and will take on both Illinois Tech and Rockford at Illinois Tech on Saturday afternoon.