Stars Hang Tough with NCAA DII Fort Hays State, Lose 3-0The Stephens College volleyball team lost in straight sets, but had its best offensive performance since Avila on Sept. 27
COLUMBIA, Mo. – Although Stephens College volleyball (3-15, 0-4 AMC) dropped its sixth match in a row, the team was able to take away several positives from its meeting with NCAA Division II opponent Fort Hays State. The large squad from Hays, Kan. locked up a 25-19, 25-17, 25-23 victory over the Stars, but not without a fight from the home team.
“The girls worked really hard today and all three games were close,” said second-year head coach Rose Obunaga. “I thought they got into the game and learned how to play against a big team like Fort Hays State. From the game today, I think we will proceed to tomorrow’s matches with high spirits and ready to play Harris-Stowe State and Oakland City.”
In the first set, FHSU opened up the match with a 5-1 run and continued to pile on the kills. The Tigers pushed forward with their biggest lead of the day at 23-13. The Stars then made a surge of their own with five straight points (23-18), but it was too little, too late. Fort Hays State finished with its 19th and 20th kills to take the set 25-19.
Despite losing by its biggest margin in Set 2, Stephens College was in control of its own destiny at the midway point. The Stars went ahead 13-12, however, FHSU picked up points in nine of the next 10 rallies. Behind a .355 attack percentage, the Tigers claimed the second set 25-17.
The Stars fell behind early in the third set, but were able to regroup at the time that mattered most. A pair of kills by freshman Alyssa Beavers, who hit .333 for the match, and one from sophomore Emily Manczuk helped knot the game at 18-all. Taking advantage of a string of Tiger miscues, Stephens went up 21-19, but managed just one kill the rest of the way. The Stars dropped Set No. 3, 23-25.
As a team, the Stars hit .115 for the match, which was the best offensive output since their home-opening win against Avila (Mo.) on Sept. 27. Fort Hays State recorded 47 kills compared to Stephens’ 32. The Tigers were also quite successful at the net with six blocks on the evening.
Individually, freshman Yonne Nasimyu led the Stars with eight kills, while Manczuk, Beavers and sophomore Madison Reale picked up six kills apiece. Junior captain Samantha Phegley was efficient from her spot at setter as she registered a double-double with 28 assists and 12 digs. As usual, libero Tanya Avington led the team with a match-high 15 digs.
On Friday, the Stars will travel to the St. Louis College of Pharmacy Tournament where they will take on Harris-Stowe State (Mo.) in a non-conference matchup at 4:30 as well as an 8:30 match with Oakland City (Ind.).