The Patriot volleyball team must have wondered if the outcome of play against the University of the Cumberlands would ever change. After losing earlier this season in Williamsburg in three sets by identical 25-22 scores, John Rogers’ team fell in Tuesday’s first set at home, again by the 25-22 score.
But, although the final score still resulted in a loss for St. Catharine, the Patriots battled the visitors to five sets in this match. The Patriots evened the match 1-1 with a 25-12 win in the second set but dropped the third set 25-11. They stayed alive with a 25-22 fourth set win before losing the decisive fifth set 15-12.
“We had our chances but made some critical errors at crucial times,” said Rogers following the match.
The fifth set had the Patriots in control for much of the time. They took a 4-1 lead and still led 8-5 when the teams traded sides for the second half of the set. That seemed to break the momentum as Cumberlands, who hit just .144 for the match, went on a 10-4 run to win the set and the match.
Freshman Rebecca Just turned in the best match of her young career with 25 kills while hitting .283. Allie Southard hit .294 with 15 kills and also had five blocks. Casey Stone and Maggie Goben each had eight kills as the Patriots hit .200 as a team.
Randa Murphy led the SC defense with 29 digs. Chelsesa Wichman and Lauren Bowling had 17 each and Jessica Simmons, the lone senior on this Senior Night, had 16 digs.
The setback dropped the Patriots to 11-18 overall and 4-10 in the Mid-South Conference. Cumberlands improved to 16-10 and 7-7. St. Catharine completes the regular season Tuesday at Cumberland University in Lebanon, Tennessee.