Joplin, Mo. -- The visiting Southwest Baptist Bearcats won the first set and came out on top of two close finishes in the third and fourth en route to a three sets to one victory over Missouri Southern tonight in Young Gymnasium. Individual set scores were 17-25, 25-18, 23-25, and 22-25.
Southern (10-12, 3-6 MIAA) and Southwest Baptist (10-15, 3-6 MIAA) were tied at seven apiece, before three straight points from the Bearcats forced a Missouri Southern timeout. The Lions tied it at 13 and again at 14, before four straight points from SBU forced another Lions' timeout. SBU ended the set on an 8-3 run.
Both teams were tied at five in the second set, but the Lions scored five straight and forced SBU into a timeout. The lead was 20-10 before another SBU timeout and the bearcats made it close trailing by five twice late, but Southern scored three of the final four points to close it out.
The third set looked poised to go to extra points as the Lions, who had trailed at 20-16, fought back and cut the lead to 24-23 and forced an SBU timeout, but the Bearcats got a kill from Joanna Granzow out of the timeout to finish the set.
Southern traded points with the Bearcats in the fourth and final set, before SBU ripped off five of the next six points to take a 15-11 lead and force a Missouri Southern timeout. The Lions got to within three at 17-14, before two more kills pushed the lead back to five. An attack error from SBU cut the lead to just two (22-20) and forced a Bearcat timeout, but SBU scored three of the next five points to close out the match.
Jeanna Feldmann led the Lions with 13 kills and 13 digs, while Renee Rheinecker added 13 kills of her own. Maria Weller had 10 kills and hit .364, while Elin Skei dished out 42 assists. Kari Hammerbacher had 13 assists, while Brittany Vavao-Huggins had seven kills and six blocks.
The Lions will be back in action tomorrow (October 17) when the team travels to Maryville to take on Northwest Missouri in a 5 pm start.