BOURBONNAIS, Ill. – Despite a short-handed roster on Friday the Taylor women’s volleyball team picked up a pair of wins over Saint Francis (IL) and Saint Thomas (FL) during the first day of the Olivet Nazarene tournament.


The Trojans (14-7) were without leading hitting Becca Gerig for both matches on Friday while starting outside hitter Callie Drage did not compete in TU’s victory over Saint Thomas due to an injury sustained during Taylor’s first game of the day.


Without two of the Trojans’ most potent front line hitters, TU turned to freshman Amanda Adams who connected for a team-high ten kills in TU’s victory over Saint Francis before adding another ten kills in the Trojans’ victory over Saint Thomas.


Taylor needed five sets to put away a pesky Saint Francis team on Friday afternoon as the teams traded sets with Taylor claiming sets one and three while Saint Francis edged the Trojans in sets two and four. Taylor managed to outlast USF in the fifth set for a 15-11 victory.


In addition to the ten kills from Adams, the Trojans also counted eight terminations from senior Rachel Bouma and seven from Drage while junior Haley Harrell dished out 20 assists and freshman Brooke Syswerda added 17 assists. Sophomore Samantha Korn tallied a team-high 29 digs for TU in the win.


Adams was one of three Trojans to reach double digit kills in Taylor’s four-set victory over Saint Thomas to wrap up action on day one. Senior Kayla Springer finished with a season-best 11 kills as did junior Addy Bailey.


Taylor cruised to victories in each of the first two sets, winning 26-24 and 25-20 before Saint Thomas fought back to win the third set 26-24 to extend the match.


The Trojans fought off a relentless rally from Saint Thomas in the fourth set for a 25-23 victory to close out the match.


Harrell orchestrated the TU offensive attack again with 23 assists while Syswerda tallied 13 assists. Korn tallied a career-best 37 digs in the win while junior Jamie Scherb totaled 12 digs and three service aces.


The Trojans will continue play at the Olivet Nazarene tournament on Saturday. Taylor tangles with No. 7 Columbia College at 3:00 pm before TU wraps up the weekend with a game against the hosts from Olivet Nazarene at 3:00 pm.