Belles Battle, Fall to Cardinals and Crusaders
- Rachel Bonek led the team in kills in both matches.
- Morgan VanderWey registered a double-double against Otterbein.
- Marielle Corbett and Audrey Shannon had matching team-high dig totals on the night.
WESTERVILLE, Ohio - The Saint Mary's volleyball team (0-2) saw a comeback effort against Otterbein come up just shy before falling in a four-set final against Capital to open the season on Friday.
After falling in each of the first two sets against host Otterbein, the Belles battled back to make it a nailbiter of a match before falling 3-2 (25-16, 25-16, 24-26, 20-25, 15-11) in their opening match. Saint Mary's had a .278 hitting percentage in the third set only to out-do themselves with a .323 in the fourth set against the Cardinals. The hitting success continued in the final stanza with a .222, but Otterbein had a staggering .526 attack percentage in the fifth set to push past the Belles for the decision.
Rachel Bonek led the Belles with 12 kills and three blocks while picking up seven digs. Leah Buck added 10 kills in the match. Morgan VanderWey tallied a double-double with 35 assists and 11 digs. Marielle Corbett and Audrey Shannon had matching team-high efforts of 15 digs.
Saint Mary's came out on fire against Capital but ended up on the short end of a 3-1 (12-25, 25-21, 25-21, 25-17) final. The Belles put down 10 kills with zero errors on 21 attempts (.476 attack percentage) in the opening frame of the match-up against the Crusaders. Some untimely attack errors in the second set proved to be the difference. Capital made a late run in the third set to overtake Saint Mary's, and the Crusaders out-scored the Belles 7-5 down the stretch in the fourth set to claim the win.
Bonek again led the way with nine kills and four blocks. Buck and Corbett each chipped in eight kills, and Corbett and Shannon had matching tallies of 10 digs to pace the team. VanderWey notched 20 assists.
At the conclusion of the tournament late on Saturday, it was announced that Leah Buck had been selected to the all-tournament team.
The Belles (0-2) travel to Alma on Wednesday, September 6 for a 7:00 p.m. conference match against the Scots.