Volleyball Bears sweep Oral Roberts
The Missouri State volleyball team picked up its ninth victory in a row and improved to 14-2 on the season after winning a hotly-contested non-conference matchup with Oral Roberts (7-7) by scores of 30-26, 30-27, 30-27 Tuesday night at Hammons Student Center in Springfield.
While the final score of each game favored the home team, Missouri State trailed or was tied with ORU well into each game. The Golden Eagles held an 18-14 advantage midway through the first stanza before MSU went on a 6-1 run to temporarily seize control by one point. ORU regained the lead at 22-21, but the Bears closed on a 9-4 run to claim the early lead. Seniors Sara Thomas and Jamie Adams had four kills each in game one, while ORU’s Jackie Oliveira had eight of her match-high 21.
The second game saw the visitors fight back from a 20-15 deficit to knot the score at 21-21, but the Bears again came through with a late charge for the three-point victory. Sara Staubach provided MSU’s final three kills of the game, and finished with a team-high 13 on the night. The Bears are now 8-0 this season when Staubach finishes with 10 or more kills.
The Bears held a comfortable 25-19 lead late in the final game before the Golden Eagles made things interesting, playing MSU even to a 29-23 score before fighting off four consecutive match points. Oliveira gave MSU the win after hitting her final attack into the net on what was an otherwise exceptional performance. The Bears hit .366 in the final game and .293 for the match, with senior setter Katelyn Panzau contributing four kills on four swings in game three.
Panzau nearly notched her first triple-double of the season, finishing with nine kills (on .615 hitting) and nine digs to go with 45 assists. Panzau also blocked five ORU attacks.
Thomas had her sixth double-double of the year with 10 kills against no errors and 13 digs. Adams chipped in 11 kills, and freshman Shayla Patrick added eight on .500 hitting.
The Bears return to Missouri Valley Conference play Friday evening at 7 p.m. against Southern Illinois at Hammons.