WINONA LAKE, Ind. – On a night where she eclipsed 1,000 career digs, Caylie Teel sparked Grace’s volleyball team past Mt. Vernon Nazarene.
Teel had an instrumental double-double of 10 kills and 11 digs to propel the Lady Lancers (8-5, 3-2 Crossroads League) to a 3-1 victory at the Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center.
Teel reached her defensive milestone of 1,000 career digs despite making a larger impact on offense on Wednesday night.
The junior, who started the match in a defensive rotation, was switched to attack by head coach Katie Van Hofwegen to give Grace a boost. The tactic worked as Teel had eight of her 10 kills in the decisive fourth set to secure Grace’s win.
Wednesday’s match featured major momentum changes with Grace remaining as the aggressor for much of the match. The Lady Lancers had 54 kills compared to 39 for the Cougars (9-6, 1-3 CL). Alexa Hill kept Grace’s offense supplied with 49 assists to go along with 11 digs.
Grace began the match strongly with a 9-3 advantage, but MVNU fought back to take a 16-15 lead. Sierra Smith helped shift the set with two kills and a block on consecutive rallies, leading Grace to a 25-19 win.
MVNU evened the match in the second set with a six-point win. Grace fell into an early hole and never recovered.
Grace’s defense was stifling in the third set. The Cougars had over twice as many attack errors (12) as kills (5) in the game, allowing Grace to cruise to a nine-point win.
The fourth set was owned by the Lady Lancers’ offense. Grace generated an unstoppable attack, racking up 21 kills in a 25-16 win. Teel’s eight kills were a consistent and emphatic source of offense. She notched her 10th kill on the final point of the match, smashing an attack from the left side of the court to end the contest.
Smith led all players with 13 kills, and Sara Miller had a match-high 21 digs.
Marta Bleed finished with nine kills and three block assists, and Kari Feddema added nine kills on a .412 percentage to go along with three block assists. Gina Novotny and Emily Sharp each tallied eight digs.
Next up, the Lady Lancers host Huntington on Friday at 7 p.m.