Bluffton 3, Mount St. Joseph 0
Bluffton dominates HCAC heavyweight Mount St. Joseph
October 2, 2009
By: Erin Neal, sports information assistant
BLUFFTON, Ohio - The Bluffton University Beavers started off their 2009 Heartland Cnference play with a 3-0 win over 10-time defending HCAC champion Mount St. Joseph in Founders Hall on Friday, October 2. It is the first time since 1990, a span of some 25 matches, that the Beavers have won against Mount St. Joseph. With the victory, the Beavers advanced to 12-5 overall and 1-0 in conference play.
The starting set saw exciting play from both squads, no lead expanding past five points. The Beavers prevailed 25-20. In set two, Bluffton jumped out to a quick 6-2 advantage with a series of kills from outside hitter Nicole Wood (Tiffin/Hopewell-Loudon) and opposite hitter Allison Streicher (Continental), forcing a Mount timeout at 13-7. The Beavers then finished out the set with yet another kill from Streicher, ending with a 25-19 win.
Bluffton surged ahead in set three with its relentless defensive effort and outstanding offensive attack. The Beavers found themselves up 21-11, and after a last-chance timeout by The Mount, a couple of kills from sophomore Jenna Eshleman (Landisville, Penn./Hempfield) and Courtney Zimmerman (Leesburg/Fairfield) sealed the match with a final score of 25-18.
In the victory the Beavers were led by a core of contributors. Junior setter Shauna Rowland (Bucyrus/Wynford) tallied up another double-double with her 36 assists and 19 digs. She connected with outside hitters Eshleman and Wood, who each had 12 kills apiece. They were followed by Streicher with nine kills and Zimmerman with seven.
Defensively, senior libero Brittany Roth (Findlay) racked up 13 digs on the night, bringing her close to the 2,000 mark for her career. Eshleman, who also picked up an impressive 18 digs, finished with a double-double.
The Beavers continue with conference play tomorrow afternoon (October 3) when they host the Panthers of Hanover College. Match time is slated for 1 p.m.