Volleyball moves to 8-0 with wins against LaGrange and Millsaps

Alex Bothe (Photo by Jimmy Mitchell)
Alex Bothe (Photo by Jimmy Mitchell)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—With a 3-0 win over LaGrange and a thrilling five-set come-from-behind victory against Millsaps today in the McAttack Volleyball Bash, Birmingham-Southern remained undefeated in 2013 and moved to 8-0 on the season.

The Panthers defeated LaGrange by the scores of 25-16, 25-20, 25-16, extending their streak of unbeaten sets to 21 over seven matches. Junior Meredith Lee led all players with 12 kills, hitting .370, followed by senior Alex Bothe with 11 kills and a .368 attack percentage. Lee also posted a double-double with 10 digs to go with her 12 kills, as well as three blocks. Sophomore Emily Dang led with 22 assists, while sophomore Caitlin Lee had 10, and sophomore libero Lauren Bedford led with 14 digs. Junior Katie O'Bar led with four blocks.

In the second match of the day, Millsaps broke BSC's unbeaten set record, winning the first two sets 25-14 and 25-23. Set three was close the whole way up until the Majors held a 16-15 lead, after which BSC out-scored them 10-3 down the stretch to win the set 25-19. The fourth set also started out fairly close, with BSC holding a 15-12 lead before scoring seven unanswered points to go up 22-12. Millsaps was able to score four more points before a service error put the Panthers on the winning end of a 25-16 decision to send the match to set five.

BSC scored the first two points of the fifth set and would never trail, pulling out to a 9-4 lead and then 12-5, after which the Majors used a 4-1 run to cut it to 13-9, prompting a BSC timeout. The Panthers came out of the timeout and won the next point on a kill by junior Kelly Foster, but gave up a point to the Majors on a service error before finally putting the match away on a kill by Lee, 15-10.

Bothe and Lee led with 12 kills apiece, while O'Bar had 10. Bothe and Lee also both had double-doubles, with 24 and 16 digs, respectively, and O'Bar led with five blocks. Dang led with 26 assists, but split time with sophomore Katie McCormack, who had 23 assists. Bedford led with 32 digs, which puts her at 10th on the all-time single-match list.

"I said yesterday that I thought we played maturely as a team, and tonight we all knew it was going to be a tight match from beginning to end regardless of how many sets it took," Head Coach Judy Green said. "For us to go down 0-2 and come back, and show the composure that we showed, was really impressive. We played even more maturely tonight than we did yesterday, and we did that against a very good team.

"I thought we got very good balance in our offense and made some adjustments offensively and took what they gave us," Green continued. "I like where we're headed. We'll enjoy this for a couple days and then get back to work next week."

BSC is on the road next Friday, Sept. 13, traveling to face LaGrange College at 6 p.m. Eastern, and then returns home on Tuesday, Sept. 17, opening Southern Athletic Association action with a rematch against Millsaps at 7 p.m. Central in Bill Battle Coliseum.