Belles Sweep Hornets in Home Opener
- Rachel Bonek put down a career-best 16 kills on the night to pace the Belles.
- Marielle Corbett added 11 kills with just two errors on 28 attempts for a .321 attack percentage.
- Nicole Ehardt tallied a career-high 13 digs.
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The Saint Mary's volleyball team christened the new fieldhouse expansion of the Angela Athletic & Wellness Complex with a 3-0 (25-23, 25-22, 25-15) win over Kalamazoo on Friday night.
The opening set featured 14 tied scores as both teams jockeyed back and forth for momentum and a lead. The visiting Hornets gained the first lead of more than two points at 10-7, but the Belles came right back with a 6-1 scoring spurt for a 13-11 advantage. Later in the set with the score tied 19-19, Saint Mary's got back-to-back kills by Marielle Corbett and Rachel Bonek to gain a 21-19 edge. Kalamazoo knotted the score at 21-21 before edging ahead 22-21 on an error by the Belles. Bonek, however, came through with consecutive kills for a 23-22 Belles' lead. A Saint Mary's service error sent the set to its 14th tie at 23-23. Grace Barrett came up big late in the set with a solo block on a joust at the net and a kill to close out the first stanza as the Belles won 25-23.
Saint Mary's opened the second set on a tear by getting a quick 14-7 lead. The scrappy Hornets chipped away at the deficit to make it 16-14 before coming back to tie the set at 17-17. Barrett came through with a kill to make it 18-17, but a kill by Kalamazoo tied the score at 18-18 moments later. The Belles built some distance with a 4-0 spurt on kills by Morgan VanderWey, Leah Buck, and Marielle Corbett as well as a service ace by Nicole Ehardt. The Hornets cut the deficit to two points at 23-21 and at 24-22, but Corbett put down the set-winning point with a kill for a 25-22 decision.
Kalamazoo took the opening point of the third set, but Saint Mary's claimed the next four and never trailed again in the stanza. With the score at 6-5, the Belles put together a 9-3 run for an insurmountable lead. Saint Mary's led by at least five points over the remainder of the set while taking the sweep with a 25-15 third set.
Rachel Bonek put down a career-best 16 kills on the night to pace the Belles. Marielle Corbett added 11 kills with just two errors on 28 attempts for a .321 attack percentage. The freshman chipped in 12 digs. Audrey Shannon had a match-high 19 digs and two service aces, and Nicole Ehardt tallied a career-high 13 digs. Morgan VanderWey recorded 38 assists in the win.
The Belles (2-2, 2-0 MIAA) have a quick turnaround as they travel to AVCA No. 1 ranked Calvin for a 1:00 p.m. conference match against the Knights.