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Grace spikers pick up late-season win at MVNU

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio – Grace’s volleyball team earned a crucial win in five sets on the road against Mt. Vernon Nazarene on Wednesday night.

After taking a commanding 2-0 lead, the Lady Lancers dropped the third and fourth sets to keep the Lady Cougars alive. Grace (18-4, 10-6 Crossroads League) came away victorious after winning the fifth set 15-9, clinching third place in the Crossroads League standings.

Savannah Hart led the Lady Lancers’ attack, producing 18 kills with an efficient .567 percentage; she also contributed 8 block assists. Grace’s offense was consistent with 58 kills and a .220 percentage.

Alexa Hill flourished in setting the Lady Lancers up for their attack. She finished with 44 assists along with seven digs.

Grace had little trouble taking the first two sets.  The Lady Lancers dominated the opener, winning by a score of 25-12 with a .462 percentage. The second set of the match saw much of the same as Grace won 25-15.

Mount Vernon (18-15, 5-11 CL) stayed alive by winning the third set 25-20. In the fourth set, the Lady Cougars got off to a 5-0 start and rode that momentum to a 25-17 win while holding Grace to a .029 percentage.

The final set was a back-and-forth affair as both teams tried to gain an edge. The Lady Lancers showed killer instinct down the stretch, finishing the game on a 7-0 run to come away with a 15-9 victory. It was only fitting that Hart earned the last kill for Grace.

Sara Miller, the reigning NAIA Defender of the Week, led Grace’s defense with 27 digs. Caylie Teel contributed on both offense and defense with 10 kills and 16 digs. Gina Novotny earned a career high with 18 digs, and Sierra Smith added 12 kills and four block assists.

Grace will face league rival Bethel in its last regular season home game of the year. The match takes place Friday at 7 p.m.

This victory locks the Lady Lancers into third place in the Crossroads League standings. This means Grace will host a Crossroads League quarterfinal match on Nov. 4.