Washburn volleyball drops set but picks up victory over Missouri Southern

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Kyle Manthe

Big point: The team comes together to celebrate after winning a point in the third set. The Ichabods defeated Missouri Southern 3-1 on Oct. 8, 2021.

“Hopefully that shows us that we need to pick it up a little bit for tomorrow.” – Berg on the ending sets of the match

Riding a six-match winning streak Washburn volleyball entered its match on Oct. 8 against Missouri Southern in first place in the MIAA standings. While the Ichabods were number one in all of division two, the Lions were struggling, entering the day with a 3-12 record overall.

Washburn jumped out to a fast start against Missouri Southern in the first set, with a controlling 8-1 advantage. The offense of the Ichabods was efficient, and they forced the Lions to commit attack errors when they could garner a return. The points got longer as the set went on but Washburn stayed on the winning end, taking a 25-8 victory. Senior outside hitter Genna Berg led the way with five kills while senior libero Faith Rottinghaus tallied nine digs in the set.

“We were just connecting really well with the setters, and I think confidence was really big,” said Berg.

Missouri Southern put up more resistance to begin the second set, splitting the first eight points four each way. The next six points would belong to the Ichabods as Berg had a run of three straight on her own. Washburn would take the next four points before forcing the Lions to take a timeout with the score at 14-5. The rest of the set would be no problem for the Ichabods as they took it 25-8. Senior setter Allison Sadler led the way with ten assists in the set while Berg added four kills and five digs.

In the third set Missouri Southern struck first against the starters of Washburn with a 5-0 lead. The Ichabods would not take much time to get back into the game, evening up the score at 5-5 with a flurry of points. The two sides would trade the next ten points before the Lions broke away with five in a row to take a 16-12 lead. Washburn pushed back but the Lions offense continued to attack before the Ichabods took a timeout with the score at 22-18.

Two points for Washburn out of the timeout forced Missouri Southern to counter with a timeout of its own. It was effective as the Lions finished the set off on a 3-1 run to take it 25-22. Berg and freshman outside hitter Jalyn Stevenson each contributed four kills in the set.

““We should have beat them in five more minutes and then gotten out of the gym,” said Head Coach Chris Herron on the team’s performance in the third set.

After a 2-2 start in the fourth set the Ichabods got in a rhythm and took control with a score of 11-4. Leading the charge was senior middle hitter Allison Maxwell who had five kills in that time. The next fifteen points would go the same as the first, as Washburn doubled its lead, making it 22-8. Missouri Southern would outscore the Ichabods the rest of the way, but Washburn still left the set winning 25-14, and the match 3-1.

“Tonight that loss kind of kicked us in the butt a little bit but I think overall, like you said, we are still undefeated and we should feel good about that,” said Berg.

The win improved the Ichabods season record to 15-1 overall and 7-0 in conference play. Berg led the way with 18 kills and an efficient .571 attack percent and Maxwell added 12 kills. Moving the ball, Sadler finished with 35 assists while Rottinghaus recorded 22 digs.

Next up for Washburn is another home match, this time against Pittsburg State University on Oct. 9.