Morgan Twing
Morgan Twing
Saint Xavier University
St. Ambrose
Women's Volleyball - Tue, Sep. 5, 2017

It wasn't easy, but the Bees will take their CCAC-opening five-set win over Saint Xavier Tuesday night at Lee Lohman Arena.

Up two-sets-to-one, St. Ambrose squandered a five-point lead late in the third and endured a rough fourth set before ultimately prevailing 28-26, 25-19, 23-25, 12-25, 15-12.

SAU is now 3-4 overall after defeating Saint Xavier for the first time since 2013.

The Bees were three points away from winning in three sets. But after taking a 22-17 lead in the third, St. Ambrose watched Saint Xavier (8-2, 0-1) win eight of the next nine points to steal the set.

Things got worse in the fourth as the Cougars raced in front 14-4 and never looked back in forcing the decisive fifth set.

That's when the Bees came back to life.

Riley Hummert started the set with a kill and after two SXU hitting errors and a service error, SAU led 4-1. One point later, an Abby Happ kill was followed by a Jenna Laxton ace for a 6-2 lead.

From there, Saint Xavier was able to draw within a point twice, the last time coming at 9-8, but both times St. Ambrose had the answer. Leading 9-8, Clarissa Blick put down a kill and that was followed by a Cougars' error to extend the lead to 11-8. Blick and Emily Mouson teamed for a big block and a 12-9 lead and kills from Hummert and Natalie Bochenek gave St. Ambrose a match point at 14-11. Two points later, a Saint Xavier hitting error gave SAU the hard-fought win.

The victory came after the Bees rallied themselves in the opening set. The Cougars led 24-22 before back-to-back Happ kills evened the score at 24-24. St. Ambrose erased two more set points at 25-24 and 26-25 before a Morgan Twing kill gave SAU its first set point at 27-26. That was the break the Bees needed as an SXU error helped SAU to the first set.

St. Ambrose dominated the second set, grabbing a 9-2 lead behind kills from Blick, Allie Brent, Hummert and Bochenek. The lead was as big as 10 points at 16-6 and the Bees coasted from there.

SAU led throughout much of the third set before faltering late, setting up the fifth-set dramatics.

Happ and Hummert led the team with 12 kills apiece. Brent finished with 11, Bochenek had eight and Blick ended with seven. Marissa Boyer had a team-high 27 assists to go along with 14 digs, while Twing recorded 22 assists and 13 digs. Happ (19), Laxton (17) and Hummert (15) also registered double-digit digs.

The Bees will next visit CCAC rival Cardinal Stritch Thursday at 7 p.m.