By: Matylda Zamudio
Monaca, Pa.— The Penn State Beaver women's volleyball team collected a 3-1 win against ladies of Butler County Community College at home Wednesday night after the ladies took an early 2-0 lead.
The teams went back and forth in the early minutes of set one. The lady lions pulled ahead by 4 at 11-7, but Butler County CC cut Beaver's lead to 1 point shortly after. Down the stretch, freshman Mine' Okoloko (Boca Raton/ NMH) and senior Amanda Mike (Hopewell) combined for back-to-back kills to push Beaver ahead by 5 points and force Butler County CC to call a time-out (19-14). Beaver continued its run after the break thanks to a service ace followed by a kill from sophomore Heaven Bowman (Houston/ Dulles) and another kill by Mike to give Beaver an 8-point edge (22-14). Sophomore Maria Slater (Houston/ Elsik) rounded out Beaver's scoring with the final point thanks to a big deflection, helping the team take a 25-15 set victory.
Set two was a much closer affair between the opponents, tying the score six times to bring the set to 19-19. The lady lions then started to pick up the pace and thanks to a deflected hit by sophomore Kelsie Hallum (Hopewell), the match was at set point for Beaver (24-21). While Butler County CC scored the next point, sophomore Ramiya White (Westland/ Wayne Memorial) struck the final blow with a final kill to earn a 25-22 set win for Beaver.
Up 2-0, the lady lions looked to close it out in set three, but Butler County CC took an early 9-5 run to prompt Beaver to take a time-out. But Mike helped Beaver get within striking distance down the stretch with two late kills to cut Butler County CC's lead to only one, forcing the visitors to call another time-out (21-20). After the break, Bowman scored the next point to tie the game (21-21) and caused Butler County CC to call yet another time-out. But Beaver dropped the ball in the final minutes of the set, allowing Butler County CC to claim a 25-21 set win.
The lady lions shook off the last set loss and got right down to business at the beginning of the fourth set, making a 7-1 right out the gate. Beaver stayed hot the rest of the set and took a 15-point lead over Butler County CC off a kill by Mike. In the final minutes of the game, Mike scored a late kill, which she followed up with a service ace for Beaver to be knocking on the door of a victory and put the match a setpoint 24-9. The lady lions went on to score in the next rally (25-10) and take a 3-1 win for the evening.
Mike led the offense with 14 kills, 4 service aces and 8 digs followed by White, who contributed 9 kills of her own. On defense, Bowman led in digs with 26 tonight, and Slater and Okoloko combined for all 4 of Beaver's blocks with 2 apiece. Hallum had an impactful performance tonight with 30 assists, 3 service aces and 7 digs.
After tonight's contest, Beaver is now at a (2-2) overall record.
The lady lions will be back for at home on Saturday, Sept. 7, for the PSU Beaver Tri-Match. Beaver will face Potomac State Community College in game one is at noon and Kent State University at Tuscarawas for game two at 4 p.m.