By Brian Ramsey
OBU Sports Information
ARKADELPHIA — The Ouachita Baptist University volleyball team wrapped up the home portion of its 2021 fall schedule on Thursday with a 3-1 win over Southern Arkansas on Senior Day.
Final game scores were 25-23, 22-25, 25-21, and 25-19. With the win, Ouachita (9-18, 4-10 GAC) keeps its hopes alive on qualifying for the Great American Conference Championship Tournament. The Tigers are a half-game out of eighth place in the league standings with one more week of the regular season to go. The GAC Tournament will feature the top eight teams.
The Tigers posted their second highest hitting percentage in GAC play this season on Thursday against the Muleriders (5-19, 1-13 GAC), finishing the match with 51 kills and 17 errors on 130 swings for a .262 percentage.
In the first set, Ouachita led for most of the frame, but SAU rallied for five straight to take a 20-19 lead. The Muleriders committed errors of some fashion four times in the next six rallies to allow Ouachita to regain the lead. The Tigers closed out the set on a 4-1 run.
The second set was back-and-forth, with SAU coming out on top. Neither team put together runs of more than three points.
Ouachita took a 2-1 lead in the match with a win in the third set, sparked by a 10-2 run midway through the frame that put the Tigers up 17-12. SAU match the Tigers the rest of the way, but Ouachita’s big run earlier in the set proved too much to overcome.
SAU went cold in the last part of the fourth set to allow the Tigers to put away the match. The Tigers won 10 of the final 12 rallies.
Ouachita honored four seniors following the win. Temi Fayiga, Lexie Castillow, Emily Low, and Rileigh Fielder were recognized and accompanied by their families. Low and Fielder are four-year letter winners for Ouachita. Castillow and Fayiga have played for three seasons. Three of the four have plans outside of Arkadelphia in the future. Castillow plans to remain at Ouachita for graduate school, and will be eligible to play a fifth season with the Tigers.
The Tigers close out the regular season next week on the road against Henderson State on Tuesday and Arkansas Tech on Thursday.