Tigers rally to beat Choctaws in 5 sets

By Brian Ramsey
OBU Sports Information

ARKADELPHIA — After going down two sets to one, the Ouachita Baptist University volleyball team rallied to win the next two sets to beat Mississippi College on Friday night and secure its first home victory of the season in the process.

Final game scores were 25-18, 20-25, 18-25, 25-19, and 15-6.

The first set was a back-and-forth with long scoring rallies for both teams. The Tigers (4-6) used a 5-0 run midway the opener to hold a 16-9 lead, but the Choctaws (1-2) responded with four in a row to climb back in. It was a pair of three-point runs for the Tigers late in the match that put Ouachita on top 1-0 in the match.

The Tigers had a .391 hitting percentage in the first set, but that number fell to below .100 in the next two sets, which allowed MC to take a two-game lead in the match.

The Tigers rallied in the fourth set, hitting .367 as a team. Ouachita used a four-point run late in the set off the serve of Kellen Church to take a 17-9 lead, ultimately too much for the Choctaws. MC did manage to within four points, but the Tigers ended the match scoring on four of the final six rallies to force a fifth and deciding set.

It was all Tigers in the fifth set. MC scored the first point, but the Tigers posted their largest scoring of the match in response with seven straight points, again off the serve of Kellen Church.

Kayla Steinmeyer had a big night for the Tigers. The St. Charles, Missouri native posted career highs in kills (18), aces (3), and digs (12). She committed only four errors on 38 swings for a .368 percentage.

Emily Low was the most efficient scorer for the Tigers with 11 kills on 17 attacks with only one error for a .588 percentage. She also added three block solos and five blocks assists to aid the Ouachita defensive effort.

Rileigh Fielder also reached double-digits in kills with 10, her fifth double-digit kill performance of the season.

Kellen Church led the Tigers in assists with 30.

The Tigers had three players reach double-digits in digs with Lexie Castillow at 22, Steinmeyer at 12, and Church at 11.

Ouachita is back in action at home on Saturday with a 9 a.m. matchup with Auburn-Montgomery and another meeting with the Choctaws at noon.