Top-8, here we come

Biola moves into the quarter-final round of the NAIA tournament by sweeping Madonna University

Dale Fredriks, Writer

For the second time in only three days, the Biola Eagles volleyball team faced up against the Madonna University Crusaders. The first time was in pool play of the NAIA tournament, and Biola took the 3-1 victory over the Crusaders. Both teams advanced to the first round of single elimination, but the extra experience would not be enough to help Madonna as Biola got the victory again, this time by a 3-0 sweep.

The Eagles played a very solid match, winning the first two sets 25-15 and taking their third 25-19. The team posted a .330 kill percentage for the match, based off their 43 kills and only 12 errors. Conversely, Madonna only put away 28 balls, while committing 20 errors, which amounted to a .084 average.

Of particular note was the performance by senior outside hitter Britta Blaser. She led the Eagles with 13 kills, which, while being a solid number, is not particularly unique for a Biola hitter this season. The thing that made her performance so good was the fact that she was set only 19 times, and committed no errors. Her .684 kill percentage is the fourth highest for the team on the season, and only senior middle blocker Alyssa Mason has bested her for most kills without an error, as she got 14 kills without an error on Oct. 24 against William Jessup.

Mason had a bit of an off-game today, as she only got four kills, but other Eagles players stepped up and did their share. Senior middle blocker Lauren Hoenecke and senior outside hitter Joclyn Kirton each contributed 10 kills, and freshman outside hitter Christina DenBoer had a low-output but high-efficiency performance, getting set six times but putting three of them away without an error for a .500 kill percentage.

Senior right-side hitter Crissy Cunningham had another great game behind the serving line, as she accounted for four of the six Eagles aces on the match. The other two were split between junior defensive specialist Tess Van Grouw and Mason.

With this victory, the Eagles record moves to 30-3 heading into the quarterfinal round of the tournament. They will face the No. 4 ranked Columbia College Cougars at 3:45 p.m. PST on Dec. 4.

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