The UCA’s volleyball team earned a trio of wins this week against conference rivals Houston Baptist, New Orleans and Southern Louisiana, winning 3-0, 3-1 and 3-0, respectively. This moves the Bears to a 5-1 conference record with a seven-game winning streak.
Central Arkansas (7-9, 3-1 SLC) came out strong, taking a sizable lead in the first set and forcing a myriad of timeouts from the Huskies. The timeouts were to no avail, leaving the Sugar Bears to take the first set 25-17.
The Sugar Bears continued their hot streak, bashing the Huskies in a quick 25-14 win in the second set. The Huskies took two of the first three points in the third set for their first lead of the match. The teams traded runs for the remainder of the set, but the Sugar Bears came out on top, securing the win for the night with a 25-20 win in the third set.
On the night, the Sugar Bears hit .341 for the set, with four players each tallying at least seven kills. Junior middle blocker Fulani Petties and senior outside hitter Heather Schnars led the way for the Sugar Bears, each collecting nine kills, while junior outside hitter Rachel Sharp and sophomore right setter Megan Nash each added seven kills.
Senior setter Amy South was all over the court, turning a match-high 29 assists, while digging six HBU attacks and serving up a pair of aces for one of her most complete matches of the season. Nash and Petties tied for the match-high in blocks, each bringing three, while freshman defensive specialist Allie Kemp dug a match-high 15 attacks from the Huskies.
The Sugar Bears kept the train rolling on Thursday night, hosting the University of New Orleans Privateers at home and picking up a 3-1 win over the Privateers.
The Sugar Bears opened up offensively, hitting .333 in the first set.
Schnars picked up six kills in the opening set, with Petties adding four more, earning UCA the set 25-18 to take a 1-0 lead in the match.
New Orleans came out strong in the second set, with UNO outhitting Central Arkansas .333 to .121 to take the second set 25-10 and to equalize the match at 1-1. Schnars and Sharp were the only Sugar Bears with kills in the set, each tallying three.
UCA used its attack in the third set, hitting .256 while keeping the Privateers to an attack percentage of .152. Schnars led the charge, adding eight kills to her total, and Sharp added five as UCA took the second set 25-18, giving them the lead.
The fourth set proved to be the last, as both teams fought for control. Schnars led once again, tallying seven more kills in the set, which UCA took 25-21 to win the match 3-1.
On the night, Schnars tallied a season-high of 24 kills while hitting .378 and adding 11 digs, earning a double-double.
South had a match-high of 37 assists, claiming her own doubledouble with 11 digs. The Sugar Bear defense was led by senior defesnive specialist Corri Hunt and Kemp, who tied for the team high with 14 digs each. Schnars, Nash and freshman middle blocker Savanah Allen each had a pair of blocks.
UCA took on the Southeastern Louisiana Lady Lions in their final match of the week to close out an eight-match home stretch. The Sugar Bears rallied after a slow start, taking down the Lady Lions in straight sets to push their win streak to seven matches.
After a brief lead from Southeastern Louisiana (7-10, 1-2 SLC), the Sugar Bears battled back, closing out the set with a 6-0 run to take the first set 25-21. South led the comeback, earning 14 assists in the set.
The Sugar Bear came out fiery in the second set, building a quick 8-2 lead. After some back and forth, the Sugar Bears took the set 25-15 to extend their lead in the match to 2-0. The Sugar Bears finished the kill in the third set, hitting .300 and limiting the Lady Lions to a .027 attack percentage, taking the set 25-10 to win the match 3-0.
Schnars led on the day, tallying a match-high 12 kills, while Nash added 11 kills while hitting a .714 South dolled out a match-high 33 assists. Schnars also led the defense, digging a match-high 13 assists, while Nash picked up a pair of solo blocks.
UCA will hit the road for the first two matches of a four-match road trip. The Sugar Bears take on McNeese State at 7 p.m. Oct. 8, before going head to head against Nicholls State at 12 p.m. Oct. 10.
This article originally appeared in the Oct. 7, 2015 print edition of The Echo.
image via ucasports.com