VB: Leads slip away from Berg at BW

(Doug Sampson file photo)
(Doug Sampson file photo)

BEREA -- The Heidelberg University volleyball team let a late first-set lead slip away in a 3-1 loss at Baldwin Wallace University on Tuesday.  The Student Princes led 24-22, but BW took the final four points of the first set en route to the win -- 26-24, 20-25, 25-22, 25-22. It was BW's first win over Heidelberg since 2007 and first conference victory over The Berg since 2006.  

Heidelberg slipped to 16-6 overall, 3-1 in the OAC.  The Yellow Jackets improved to 23-2, 3-1.

Taylor Valentine led the offensive attack for Heidelberg, amassing 16 kills and a .234 attack percentage.  Laura Schrag added 10 kills on 23 swings. Anna McNabb dished out 41 assists.

Defensively, libero Taylor Arbogast paced the team with 25 digs.  Morgan Strenk added 13 digs. Valentine and Sydney Moore each tallied nine digs.  At the net, Amy Feczer had a total of six blocks while Schrag added four.

Tied at 16 in the opening set, HU reeled off three straight points, eliciting a BW timeout.  The respite proved effective as BW rebounded to rattle off three of their own. Later, a kill by Alyssa Crusey put the Tricolor up 24-22.  A service error, an attack error and two BW kills sent the first set in favor of the hosts.

With the Yellow Jackets performing inconsistently in the second, Heidelberg was able to take control.  Out to a 21-13 lead, Heidelberg watched BW chip away at the cushion because of a few attack errors. Crusey scored the final three points of the set for Heidelberg.  

Down 13-8 in the third set, BW took a timeout.  The break worked. The Yellow Jackets would break off a 9-0 run to take a 17-13 lead.  Undaunted, the Student Princes battled back -- getting within one on four separate occasions.  In the end, however, the relentless BW attack pushed Heidelberg to the brink of defeat.

The script was flipped in the fourth set.  BW enjoyed a 17-11 lead before Heidelberg surged back.  Behind the power serves of Maddie Szawranskyj, HU ripped off five straight.  The hosts regrouped and pushed their lead back to four at 20-16. The Student Princes would get no closer than two the rest of the way.  

Heidelberg's tough schedule continues Saturday, as they host a trimatch with Otterbein University (15-4, 3-0) and Albion College (10-7, 3-2 MIAA).  HU vs. Otterbein is at 11 a.m., followed by the Cardinals and the Britons. Heidelberg and Albion wrap up the day.