Comeback City

Photo credit: Julia Wall
Photo credit: Julia Wall


WATERTOWN, Wis. -- It could be the last match of the season, and the Sabercats played like it was their last match ever.

Down 2-0 after losing a set 11-25, the Sabercats rallied to win a five-set thriller in what could be their final match of the season.


  • Result: Maranatha 3-2 Graceland (21-25, 11-25, 28-26, 25-20, 15-12)
  • Venue: Maranatha Baptist University
  • Location: Watertown, Wis.
  • Attendance: 250
  • Records: MBU (9-14), GU (9-10)


The first two sets were all about Graceland. The Yellowjackets held off a late Sabercats charge to win 25-21 in the opener, then they breezed to a 25-11 win to seemingly put the match in the books.

But then the Sabercats began their comeback.

As they've shown so many times in their last few seasons, the team stuck with it with impressive resiliency. After holding on to win 28-26, the Sabercats were gaining momentum, swinging themselves out to their second set win in a row. The win came with some staunch blocking from Rory MasseyIsaac McKee, and James Rossiter, as well as 15 kills led by clutch swings from Joel Depue. After thinking they were done and dusted, the Sabercats had fought back to all square.

And with the volume levels in the gym and the Sabercats' eagerness in mind, the outcome of the fifth set was almost a certainty. The Sabercats saved their best play at the net for last, as they blocked or killed on every point except one en route to winning the thrilling night with a 15-12 victory in the final set.

The win was given extra significance in light of recent event cancellations around the country, which jeopardizes the remainder of the season. That, coupled with this being senior night, made an already special win stand out even more.


MBU Starters: 3- Massey, 4- McKee, 5- Dafoe, 6- Rossiter, 8- Depue, 12- Holbrook, 13- Wagner (L), 15- Smith


  • Depue: 16 K, 15 D
  • Holbrook: 13 K, 4 B
  • Massey: 5 K, 8 D, 8 B (career-high)
  • Rossiter: 8 K, 5 B
  • McKee: 7 K, 3 D, 7 B
  • Dafoe: 48 A
  • Wagner: 13 D
  • Series: Series is now tied 1-1


  • GU competes in the Heart of America Athletic Conference (NAIA)
  • GU fell the HAAC Quarterfinals last year
  • GU is on track for the best winning percentage since 2016


The Sabercats are scheduled to play at Trinity Christian College next Friday and Saturday. All schedule updates will be made at Find details at

High Notes
April 4, 2020 High Notes
Depue Makes it Two
March 16, 2020 Depue Makes it Two
Comeback City
March 12, 2020 Comeback City
Full Steam Ahead
March 7, 2020 Full Steam Ahead
Windy City Woes
February 29, 2020 Windy City Woes
Streak Snapper
February 27, 2020 Streak Snapper
Four and Counting
February 25, 2020 Four and Counting
A Sweep to Sweep
February 21, 2020 A Sweep to Sweep
Bouncing Back
February 15, 2020 Bouncing Back
Viterbo Victims
February 13, 2020 Viterbo Victims
Tied Down at IIT
February 4, 2020 Tied Down at IIT
Running Da Show
February 3, 2020 Running Da Show
Moving Up
February 1, 2020 Moving Up
A Sweep to Start
January 31, 2020 A Sweep to Start
Ending on Top
January 25, 2020 Ending on Top
Tough Start
January 24, 2020 Tough Start
Inside the Field
January 23, 2020 Inside the Field
Chi-Town Trouble
January 18, 2020 Chi-Town Trouble
Snow Storm
January 17, 2020 Snow Storm
Year Three
January 16, 2020 Year Three
DeLozier Steps In
January 3, 2020 DeLozier Steps In