Belles Sweep Spartans
- The volleyball team won their 15th match of the season with a sweep of Manchester.
- Marielle Corbett had a match-best 13 kills to go along with 18 digs and four blocks.
- Leah Buck put down 10 kills and two blocks.
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The Saint Mary's volleyball team won their 15th match of the season with a 3-0 (25-19, 25-20, 25-21) sweep over Manchester on Saturday afternoon.
The Belles took over the first set by breaking an 8-8 tie with an 11-2 run to gain a 19-10 edge over the Spartans. Nicole Lukens served up a pair of aces, Leah Buck had three kills, and the Belles capitalized on some hitting miscues by Manchester to gain the momentum on Senior Day. The Spartans pulled within four points of Saint Mary's late in the set with a block to make it a 22-18 score. The Belles responded with back-to-back kills by Buck before Marielle Corbett clinched the set with a kill in the 25-19 opener.
The two sides fought back and forth throughout much of the second set as the stanza featured six ties and two lead changes. The Spartans gained three-point leads over the Belles at 9-6 and 11-8, but Saint Mary's made sure visiting Manchester stayed well within striking distance. A stretch of play saw each team win the side out on eleven consecutive points as the score moved to 18-17 in favor of Manchester. The Belles, however, put together a much-needed run to pull ahead 21-18 with Lindsey Pelletier and Morgan VanderWey putting down a big double block prior to a Manchester hitting error and a Corbett kill. The Belles' hitting power proved to be too much late in the set with Corbett and Rachel Bonek sending home consecutive kills for the 25-20 set victory.
The third set saw six ties and four lead changes. All of those instances, however, came in the opening 31 points of play. The end of that stretch saw Saint Mary's turn a 15-13 deficit into a 17-15 lead. Rachel Bonek led that run off with a kill. A Manchester hitting error was followed by a service ace by Brittney Tarkanyi as the score moved to 15-15. Bonek and Lukens added a kill each, and the Belles gained a lead they would not give up down the stretch. A short while later, Leah Buck put down a kill before going in on a block with Corbett to push the Belles' advantage to 21-17. The Spartans were within two points at 21-19, 22-20, and 23-21, but a Manchester attack error set up a Lukens/Pelletier double block to end the set and the match with the 25-21 win.
It is the fourth consecutive 15+ win season for the Belles. It is just the second time in the 40-year history of the program that Saint Mary's has had four consecutive 15+ win seasons. The first such instance came during the 1986-1989 span of seasons.
Marielle Corbett had a match-best 13 kills to go along with 18 digs and four blocks. Leah Buck put down 10 kills and two blocks. Nicole Lukens registered eight kills and 18 digs, and Rachel Bonek had eight kills and 10 digs. Morgan VanderWey led all players with 32 assists, and Audrey Shannon tallied a match-high 22 digs. Lindsey Pelletier chipped in three blocks for the Belles.
The Belles (15-9) host Illinois Tech on Tuesday, October 31 at 7:00 p.m.