Grace spikers sweep MVNU on the road

MOUNT VERNON, Ohio – The longest road trip of the Crossroads League season ended quickly for Grace’s volleyball team.

The Lady Lancers swept Mt. Vernon Nazarene on Tuesday. The scores became increasingly closer until the end with Grace winning 25-14, 25-20 and 25-22.

Grace’s offense had a distinct advantage over the Cougars (7-6, 0-4 CL); the Lady Lancers (9-4, 3-2 CL) held a 50-33 edge in kills and 45-30 lead in assists. Grace hit at a .328 percentage as a team thanks to 42 assists by Alexa Hill.

Caylie Teel posted a double-double with 16 kills and 14 digs, making only two attack errors on a .378 percentage. Kelsee Zuidema also reached double figures with 15 kills at a .278 clip.

Grace blitzed MVNU from the opening set. The Lady Lancers smashed out 16 kills with just two errors in the 11-point win.

Zuidema got Grace off to a fast start with kills on back-to-back plays to begin the second set. MVNU rallied, however, using a pair of 5-0 runs to pull ahead 18-14.

But Grace ended the game on a 11-2 run thanks to two kills apiece from Teel and Zuidema. Grace’s two freshmen Makaela Lochmueller and Hanna Leach produced a kill on the final two points to conclude the set.

The Cougars grabbed another lead midway into the third set at 14-9, hoping to extend the match. But the Lady Lancers slowly chipped away at MVNU’s cushion and tied the score at 19-19.

Teel helped shift momentum to Grace’s side with back-to-back kills, and Deborah Michalski officially ended the match with an ace.

Lochmueller finished the match with 8 kills, 2 solo blocks and 1 block assist, hitting at a .375 percentage. Marta Bleed tallied six kills, and Gina Novotny had 14 digs.

The Lady Lancers will continue league play on Friday, hosting Huntington at 7 p.m. at the Manahan Orthopaedic Capital Center.