Back on Track

Photo credit: Kaitlyn Dobson
Photo credit: Kaitlyn Dobson

THE LEAD

WATERTOWN, Wis. -- The Sabercats effectively snapped a competitive four-match losing streak tonight, as they rolled the Rockford University Regents, 3-0.

Claire Hansel once again led Maranatha with 11 kills and nine digs. This was the Sabercats' first home win of the season, and it had been coming.

THE OVERVIEW

  • Result: Maranatha 3-0 Rockford (25-22, 25-14, 25-12)
  • Venue: Maranatha Baptist University
  • Location: Watertown, Wis.
  • Attendance: 178
  • Record: MBU (9-8), RU (4-12)

THE STORY

The Regents proved to be better than they looked on paper in the early going, as they swung themselves out to an 8-2 lead. An adroit dump kill from Kelsey Johnson and five kills from Hansel gave the Sabercats something to smile about, and soon enough, the Sabercats had pulled within one (16-17). A couple of service errors at key times stifled the Sabercats' momentum late in the set, but back-to-back kills from Karley Johnson and Gabrielle Carpenter tied the set at 22, which forced Rockford to call for time. The set ended in a matter of minutes. MBU came flying out of the timeout and quickly grabbed three points to win the set. In the opener, Maranatha put down 15 kills with just five attack errors.

In hindsight, it seemed like the Sabercats just needed a wake-up call. In the second set, they breezed out to an 18-9 lead fueled by an 8-0 run in the middle stages of the set. Allyson Brimer kept things going with three kills, and some capable defensive passing from McKenzie Janke allowed the Sabercats to call their shots. The second set ended with relative ease, as MBU took a 25-14 win. After two sets, MBU had the win within reach.

The win came soon enough. Rockford struggled with some less-than-sharp play in the beginning stages of the third set. Late kills from Hansel put the finishing touches on the night, as the Sabercats returned to their winning ways with a clean sweep of the Regents.

THE STATS

  • Hansel: recorded double-digit kills in three of her last five matches
  • Kelsey: 16 assists, 11 digs
  • Karley: 6 kills, 0 errors, 13 assists
  • Brimer: 5 kills, 4 blocks
  • Jessica Ureke: 5 kills, 13 digs
  • Rockford: 
  • Series: Maranatha now leads the series, 11-4

THE OPPONENTS

  • Rockford competes in the Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference
  • The Regents are 0-3 in conference play
  • RU is coming off of a five-set loss to Wisconsin-Platteville

THE OUTLOOK

The Sabercats will stay home for a triangular Friday. The Sabercats have a 4:00 p.m. clash with Northland followed by an 8:00 p.m. match against Finlandia University. Follow at mbusabercats.com/composite and watch at mbusabercats.com/live.

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