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October 6, 2012

Balanced attack leads Panthers to 3-1 victory over Hendrix

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—After dropping the second set, the Birmingham-Southern volleyball team rebounded to win sets three and four and defeat Hendrix, 3-1, Saturday afternoon in Bill Battle Coliseum.

The Panthers move to 12-6 overall and 7-1 in the Southern Athletic Association, tied with Berry atop the standings. The Warriors fall to 8-13 overall and 3-6 in league play.

The first set started close for the first several points, with Hendrix taking a 6-5 lead before BSC proceeded to score 10 straight points to go up 15-6. The Panthers never looked back, defeating Hendrix 25-15.

The Warriors came out strong in the second set, going up 7-1 to start and keeping a lead of several points for the remainder of the set before winning 25-19 to tie the match at 1-1.

The Panthers controlled the third set, using several short bursts of points to steadily increase their lead and win 25-17.

Set four was a thriller, with the teams trading points from the first serve and playing to 19 ties. Neither team led by more than two until the game-winning point, an attack error by Hendrix to give BSC the 25-22 win to clinch the match victory.

Junior outside hitter Alex Bothe led BSC with 12 kills, and had a double-double with 10 digs as well, and senior setter Lauren Reibe was impressive with 39 assists and a team-high 22 digs. Senior libero Presley Dickson recorded 12 digs, and freshman defensive specialist Lauren Bedford had 11. Senior middle blocker Alexis Pappas had three blocks to lead the team.

"We had a very good balance to our offense today," Head Coach Judy Green said. "Both of our middles, Alexis Pappas and Katie O'Bar, played extremely well. We also had good distribution, Lauren Reibe did a great job of keeping us balanced. When we are able to do that, it makes it difficult for another team to defend us. I also think that the way we played in the fourth set, trading points all the way up to the end, then making a surge, shows a lot of confidence. It was good to see us maintain our composure and ultimately find a way to get it done."

The Panthers are at home again tomorrow, facing Rhodes at 1:30 p.m.