Season ends in quarterfinals

Volleyball finished their year by losing to the eventual NAIA champions in the fifth set.


Marika Adamopoulos

Olivia Plew/THE CHIMES

Jack Finck, Writer

The Biola volleyball season came to an end on Dec. 4 in Sioux City, Iowa, when the Columbia College Cougars beat the No. 5 Eagles in a close fifth set. Columbia carried on to eventually win the NAIA Championship Tournament and the Eagles returned to Biola without getting past the quarterfinal round.

Biola advanced from the tournament pool play after beating Madonna University 3-1 on Dec. 1, followed by a 3-0 victory over Evangel University on Dec. 2 and a 3-1 victory over the reigning NAIA champions, Park University, on Dec. 3.


After finishing 3-0 in their pool, the Eagles advanced to the round of 16 teams to rematch the Madonna Crusaders on Dec. 4. Biola held the upper hand for the whole game and finished with a better score than three days prior, beating the Crusaders 3-0.  

In the quarterfinal round of the tournament, Biola faced off against the No. 4 Columbia College Cougars. After splitting the first four sets, Biola found themselves 15 points away from either the semifinal round or the end of the season.

Biola earned the first point of the fifth set off an attacking error by the Cougars. Columbia bounced back and held the lead until the Eagles brought the set to a tie with a score of 11-11, then again at 14-14. Two attacking errors by senior opposite hitter Britta Blaser sealed the Eagles’ fate. Biola lost 2-3.  


Senior outside hitter Alyssa Mason led the team with 16 kills, followed by Blaser who earned 12 and freshman opposite Karly Dantuma with 11. Senior middle blocker Lauren Hoenecke recorded seven blocks followed by Mason with six. The assist leader of the game was freshman setter Becca Branch with 28 and senior libero/defensive specialist Alex Brehaut lead the team with 16 digs in her last game for Biola.

Columbia advanced to the semifinals where they beat No. 1 Lindsey Wilson College by a score of 3-0. They continued to the championship game against No. 3 Missouri Baptist University and won by a score of 3-0 again. Biola was the closest team to beating the Crusaders in the tournament.


The last time Biola was not able to advance past the quarterfinals of the NAIA tournament was in 2011 when they lost to Lee University 0-3.This is also the fourth year in a row Biola has lost to the NAIA championship team in the NAIA tournament.  

Biola finished their season with a 30-4 record and a .882 winning percentage. Their season accolades include 20 NAIA Scholar-Athletes and three NAIA All-Americans: Blaser, Mason and senior outside hitter Joclyn Kirton.

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