Ludeman Powers Purple and Gold to Vital HCAC Victory
Hanover (13-13, 3-4 HCAC)
Defiance (14-10, 4-2 HCAC)
10/14/2012 | Defiance, OH | Attendance: 157
DEFIANCE, Ohio – The DC volleyball team desperately needed a victory after a four-set loss on Saturday night against the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference’s top team Transylvania. Junior Chelsea Ludeman stepped up and produced a big-time performance that powered the Jackets to a thrilling five-set win over Hanover College to stay above .500 in conference play.
Like the night before, the Jackets started strong and controlled the first frame of play. DC quickly grabbed a 7-2 lead before the Panthers closed the gap to 10-9. The Yellow Jackets responded with an impressive 9-0 run from the serving of freshman Rebecca Kain, who had three aces in the streak. The Jackets comfortably won the opening stanza 25-16.
The Panthers battled back in the second to even the set score at one apiece. Hanover got the early lead and held on to win set number two with a score of 25-22.
The Purple and Gold found itself in the same position as its previous match against Transylvania. On Sunday, the Jackets went toe-to-toe with Hanover and used another 7-0 run from Kain’s serving to take the third set 25-16. Ludeman led the Jacket attack in the third with four kills and two blocks on the defensive side.
After Defiance took a 2-1 set advantage, Hanover answered the bell and refused to go quietly. The Panthers fell behind 13-10 early and then clawed its way back and won the fourth frame by a score of 25-19, knotting the match up at 2-2.
The seesaw battle continued in the fifth and decisive set, as the Jackets jumped out to a 9-4 lead before Hanover, once again, battled back and cut the deficit to a one-point game at 12-11. With Defiance leading 14-13, the Panthers were down to their last chance. Hanover produced its 45th attacking error of the contest on match point, sealing the win for the Yellow Jackets.
Ludeman carried the Purple and Gold in the fifth with four of the team’s six kills. The junior produced her best match in HCAC action of the season with 18 kills, eight blocks and four digs. Ludeman’s eight-block performance matches her season high in the category.
Other notable Yellow Jacket performances were turned in by Kain, Bree Anderson, Alexis Pierce and Alicia Kalik. Kain cannoned seven aces in the match, the most of any Yellow Jacket this season. Anderson and Pierce each recorded 10 kills, with Anderson adding eight blocks and Pierce chipping in two of her own. Kalik surpassed the 40-assist mark for the sixth time this season, as the sophomore accumulated 41 in the contest.
The Purple and Gold are now 3-1 in five set matches this season. With the win, the Jackets also improve to 14-10 on the season and 4-2 in conference play. Defiance is now in sole possession of fourth place in the HCAC standings, with the top six teams qualifying for postseason play.
DC is back in action on Wednesday, October 17, as the Jackets travel to Anderson University for another conference matchup. The contest is set to begin at 7:00 p.m.