Eagles Knock Off Wesleyan In Five To Start Crossover

Eagles Knock Off Wesleyan In Five To Start Crossover

The Ashland University volleyball team overcame a 2-1 set deficit to defeat Kentucky Wesleyan in the Eagles' opener of the Midwest Region Crossover in Aurora, Ill., 20-25, 25-16, 22-25, 25-19, 15-7.

It was the second straight match the Eagles (11-7) have gone the distance after dropping their last match at Northern Michigan. AU has now won five straight matches at the crossover, dating back to 2015. Two of the Eagles' three wins last year came in five sets.

After dropping the opening set, the Eagles bounced back to hit .286 in the second frame, while limiting Kentucky Wesleyan (9-13) to a .074 mark. Junior Reanne Neal was the hot hand for the Eagles, with five kills on five swings in the set.

The Panthers hit .344 in the third set to take the 2-1 lead.

Ashland came back to hit .233 in the fourth frame, getting five kills from freshman Zoie Franklin and four from sophomore Shelby Woycik, on their way to forcing a deciding game.

The Eagles were dominant defensively in the fifth set, holding the Panthers to a minus-.042 hitting mark. The set was tied at 5 before Ashland closed on a 10-2 run to get the win. AU's last four points were scored on a kill with two coming from Franklin, who finished with a career-high nine kills.

Woycik led the Eagles with 16 kills (.143) and added 14 digs for a double-double. Sophomore Sophi Cudworth and Neal had 10 kills apiece. Senior libero Melanie Aguayo had a match-high 17 digs while freshman Kali Apelt handed out 38 assists.

Jaylen McEwen led the Panthers with 11 kills and Hannah Pierce had 15 digs.

The Eagles will continue play at the Midwest Region Crossover on Saturday (Oct. 14) with matches against Southern Indiana (11 a.m.) and Missouri-St. Louis (5 p.m.)