ECU volleyball team falls in five sets to OBU

Nov. 2—The East Central University volleyball team (6-7 GAC) went the distance with Oklahoma Baptist University (10-3 GAC) but fell in five sets on Tuesday night in the Kerr Activities Center.

The opening set saw both teams searching for their rhythm. The score was deadlocked nine times before the Bison went on a 7-1 scoring run to pull away 20-14. ECU fought back, closing the gap to two points at 22-20, but OBU ultimately sealed the set with a score of 25-21.

The Bison jumped out to a 4-0 lead early in the second before ECU clawed their way back, taking the lead at 7-6 and later extending it to 16-12. OBU managed to chip away at the deficit to get back within one at 17-16, but a crucial 8-1 scoring run by the Tigers propelled them to take the set 25-17.

In the third set, both teams engaged in a back-and-forth battle. But like the previous stanza, ECU broke away with a late surge, turning the tide in their favor. Tied 18-18, five straight points by the Tigers provided the cushion they needed to eventually close out the set 25-22 to give them the 2-1 lead in the match.

As the fourth set got underway, ECU seemed in control, leading 23-19 and on the verge of victory. However, they were unable to put away the Bison who managed a comeback bid to clinch the fourth set 27-25 and force a deciding fifth set.

The momentum was in favor of the Bison from there as they carried their previous sets' energy into the fifth set, jumping out to a 9-3 lead and maintaining control throughout. In the end, OBU would go on to secure the 15-8 win and 3-2 match victory.

Emma Strickland, Odalys Gonzalez and Ashleigh Miller all hit double figures in the contest. Strickland posted a team-best 18 kills and 13 digs while Gonzalez was next with 17 kills and 21 digs. Miller contributed to the offense with a season-high 13 kills and four total blocks. Julia Kabala posted 55 assists and a career-high 23 digs while Sydney Roshek defended the back row with a team-best 34 digs.

The ECU volleyball team will make a trek to Alva tonight for a matchup against Northwestern Oklahoma State University at 6 p.m.