Broncos' Season Ends With Semifinal Loss to EMU
Lena Oliver paced the Bronco defensive effort with a match-high 26 digs, giving her 53 digs over just seven sets in the Broncos' two tournament matches. The Broncos out-dug the Eagles 81-74 in the match and held them to just a .186 hitting percentage. Ave Stout led the offensive attack with seven kills and a .312 hitting percentage, and Alysia Baznik finished just two kills shy of her 14th double-double of the season with eight kills and 18 digs.
The Broncos came closest to taking a set from the Eagles in the third set, when a furious back-and-forth rally between the two teams upped the tension in the arena. The Broncos snapped an 11-11 when Ranney hit a high-hands shot for a kill out of a timeout, and Raney upped the lead to 14-11 with another kill a few points later. WMU led 21-16 late in the set when Baznik and Gillian Asque combined for a block of Katie Krasowski, forcing an EMU timeout by capping a 7-2 run. Ranney gave the Broncos set point at 24-22 with a kill, but the Eagles scored two straight to tie it. The teams traded points until 27-all, when Krasowski and Stacey Perinar added kills on back-to-back plays to give the Eagles a 29-27 set win.
WMU came out firing in the second set against the Eagles, taking a 9-3 lead and going on the early offensive. Baznik recorded a solo block of Erin Short to start the Broncos to a 4-1 lead, and the lead grew to 7-2 on a kill from Asque that forced an EMU timeout. The Eagles eventually struck back with an 8-2 run to tie the score at 11-all, though, and proceeded to control the rest of the set; they took a 19-13 lead on a Bronco attack error, and led by as many as eight points on a kill from Perinar that made it 24-16. Perinar finished the set with a kill to make it 25-17.
The Eagles controlled the first set from the beginning, opening on a 10-4 run that was capped by a block from Short and Krasowski. The Broncos pulled to within six points when Stout ripped a kill to make it 23-17, but a kill from Perinar and an ace from Jill Briner gave the Eagles the first set win.