By: Matylda Zamudio
MONACA, Pa.— The Penn State Beaver women's volleyball team hosted Mercyhurst Northeast University for Senior night Thursday, where the Lady Lions fell 3-2.
Beaver came out strong and took a 12-5 run, causing Mercyhurst Northeast to call a time-out. Down the stretch, sophomore Maria Slater (Houston/Elsik) and senior Amanda Mike (Hopewell) combined for two back-to-back to put Beaver up by 11 (19-8). The Lady Lions then claimed a 25-18 win in set one, which they mirrored in the second with another 25-18 win to go up 2-0 heading into the third.
But Mercyhurst Northeast turned it around in third by putting Beaver in a 17-10 deficit midway through the set. But Beaver started to come back, and a service ace by freshman Ashley Rabang (El Dorado Hills /Oak Ridge) helped the Lady Lions tie the set 19-19. However, Mercyhurst Northeast pulled out the close-set win in the third, 25-23.
In the fourth, the teams went back-and-forth on scoring until Beaver built up an 18-12 lead. But Mercyhurst Northeast fought back with a 4-0 run directly after, forcing Beaver to call a time-out (18-16). After the short break, Mercyhurst Northeast took the lead away from Beaver at 24-22 and took a 25-22 win against the Lady Lions after a serving error on the last rally, which tied the match, 2-2. While the Lady Lions battled hard in the fifth, they fell short 15-10 and took a 3-2 loss for the evening.
Mike led the offense 13 kills and eight digs, followed by sophomore Heaven Bowman (Houston/Dulles), who led the team in service aces, finishing with three, as well as 17 digs. Freshman Mine' Okoloko (Boca Raton/NMH) finished with two blocks and seven kills, and sophomore Kelsie Hallum (Hopewell) finished with 42 assists, two aces and 11 digs.
Beaver is now 16-8 overall for the regular season and sits at a 7-3 record in the PSUAC conference standings. The Lady Lions will face off against PSUAC rival Penn State New Kensington on the road on Sunday, Oct. 20. Game time is at noon.