The Wildcats won consecutive games for the first time this season and improved their conference record to 3-2, besting the Lamar Cardinals, 3-1, Thursday night.
After the Wildcats stole the first set 25-23 on a kill by freshman Jacey Smith, Lamar rebounded to even the match at one a piece with a 25-21 win. In games three and four, ACU took control recording eight of their season-high 11 blocks.
With the game tied at 14, ACU took advantage of consecutive errors by Lamar to take a 16-14 lead, which led to a Cardinal’s timeout. Out of the timeout, the Wildcats capitalized on two more of Lamar’s 26 errors, as senior Jennie Loerch added one of her nine kills to push the lead to five. ACU then took five out of the next seven points including consecutive kills by Loerch to secure a 25-16 win and take a 2-1 lead in the match.
“I definitely think we did a really good job of controlling things in the third set,” head coach Jason Bibler said. “When we are passing the ball well, setting well, swinging where we want to swing we do really good things.”
In set four, the Wildcats used 6-0 and 4-0 runs to jump out to a 19-8 lead after one of freshman Lauren Walker’s six blocks. Lamar would fight back, eventually cutting the lead to four, but a kill by Walker and yet another error by the Cardinals gave ACU a 25-19 victory and the match.
The Wildcats were led offensively by freshman hitter Kendall Bosse who contributed a team-high 14 kills. Loerch failed to record double digit kills for the first time this conference season, but combined with Walker to produce 10 of the Wildcats11 blocks.
The Wildcats are currently fifth in the conference, with their best Southland Conference start since the move to Div. I three years ago.
“We weren’t really fazed by their size, block wise,” Bibler said. “And that (Lamar) right now in the conference is the best blocking team in the conference. We weren’t fazed by it and I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that we’ve seen other teams that are probably more dominant at the net.”
ACU finishes their homestand this weekend against Sam Houston State, who currently sits third in the conference at 4-1, and will then travel to Houston Baptist and Texas A&M Corpus Christi as part of a two-game road trip.