MANHATTAN — The Southwestern College volleyball team capped off a perfect weekend at the Thunder Invitational at Manhattan Christian, collecting four wins to improve their winning streak to five.
The first contest of the weekend set the tone for the Lady Builders (5-4), who cruised to a relatively quick 25-12, 25-12, 25-18 victory against Ozark Christian.
Southwestern out-attacked 34 kills to 12. Ozark Christian had twice as many errors as kills.
Junior Alyxandra Blaker led the attack with 11 kills to go with four blocks. Junior Sydney Hancock contributed 22 assists and four service aces.
There was no let down against Central Christian, with Southwestern rolling to a 25-7, 25-17, 25-12 sweep.
Again, the Lady Builders capitalized on their opportunities, keeping their mistakes down and kills high, finishing with 45 kills to 14. Their relentless pressure on offense again forced errors, as Central committed 14 miscues, matching the amount of kills.
Another balanced attack was this time led by junior Kanami Ellis with 11 kills. Sophomore Kiralyah Jones and junior Lezlee Dixon added nine and eight kills, respectively, while junior Kaila Harris dished out 33 assists to go along with four aces.
The Lady Builders received arguably their toughest test of the weekend in match No. 3 against the Cottey Lady Comets, facing some back-and-forth play in two of the three sets. It was, however, another Southwestern sweep, 25-17, 25-10, 25-20.
Overall, the Lady Builders again dominated the match, posting 17 more kills than their counterparts. Southwestern did commit some errors that kept the Lady Comets in it at times, but a hitting percentage of better than 25 percent was overwhelming to Cottey’s 9 percent.
Jones continued her stellar play, leading the way with a career-high 14 kills. She also was second on the team in digs with 12. Senior Emily White was solid on defense, posting 34 digs. White ranks third in the entire NAIA in digs per set with just less than seven (6.7).
The final match of the weekend was as stress-free as it could be for the Lady Builders, who coasted to another three-set win, 25-11, 25-8, 25-12.
Southwestern allowed just 31 points to the Manhattan Christian Thunder.
The Lady Builders had a dominating 47-9 advantage in kills. While the two teams were even in errors,Southwestern was almost unstoppable in the attacks, converting 62 percent.
Jones again led the way on offense, finishing with 13 kills on 14 attacks to go with a career-high 16 digs. Harris was a big part of the team’s offensive success, finishing the three-set affair with 29 assists. Blaker continued to show her presence at the net, securing four blocks again.
The Lady Builders headed to Nevada, Mo., today for a 10:30 a.m. triangular against the Cottey Comets again and Stephens College.