Maryville, TN- Less than 24 hours after playing against Kentucky State University, the volleyball team returned to the court to play in their final regular season games. The team competed against future USA South Conference opponents Maryville College and LaGrange College in a Tri-Match hosted by Maryville.
Berea opened play against the Panthers of LaGrange College and saw themselves go down 3-0 to begin the match. The deficit did not faze the Mountaineers as they quickly tied the score up 3-3. Berea saw five points scored on them before Simone Brown's kill helped the Mountaineers pull back to within two, 8-6. LaGrange took control of the match as the set went deeper, maintaining a 17-11 advantage until Berea scored six straight points, including three service aces from Claire Mueller to tie the score at 17. The Mountaineers took their first lead of the set at 20-18 before the Panthers tied the score again at 25 each. LaGrange broke the tie and took the opening set by a score of 27-25.
After taking a 3-2 lead to begin the second set, the Panthers scored the next six points to go ahead 8-3. LaGrange looked like they were going to control the set as the points kept falling for the Panthers, but Berea hung in there and kept within striking distance. The persistency worked for the Mountaineers, as two kills by Shelby Brewer and a service ace on set point by Destiney Balser helped the team tie the match 1-1 with a 28-26 win.
A 3-3 tie in the third quickly changed to a 9-4 lead for the Panthers before Berea came back, scoring five of the next seven points to pull within two points. After the scoreboard read a 12-12 tie, Berea was outscored 13-6 as they fell behind 2-1 in a 25-18 loss. The fourth set saw the Mountaineers fall behind 6-2 before scoring the next five points to pull within two, 9-7. A 12-4 run by LaGrange put it out of range for Berea as they fell in the fourth set, 25-18, losing 3-1.
Brown led the way on the offensive end, finishing with 12 kills while Mueller finished with 41 assists. Leading the team in digs with 41 was Bailie Parker and Grace Callow finished as the team leader in blocks with three block assists.
In their second match of the day against the host team, the Scots of Maryville College used a 8-0 run to begin the game and was too much to overcome for the Mountaineers as they fell in the opening set 25-10. Berea used an 8-0 run of their own to open the second set of the match. The team extended their lead to 10-4 before the Scots had the ball fall in their favor to bring the set to a tie, 12-12. Maryville broke the tie but the Mountaineers kept the set close before going on to fall in the second set 25-20.
The third set was a drastic change from the first two sets as the points went back and forth between the two teams as teams tied 6-6 to open the set. A service ace by Parker allowed Berea to tie the score at 10 before a ball handling error by the Scots and a Kristin Barnes kill gave the Mountaineers a 12-10 advantage. The teams continued to exchange points until Maryville created enough separation to win the third set 25-20, winning the match 3-0.
Pacing the offense for Berea was Barnes, who finished with seven kills. Mueller was the match leader in assists for the team with 16. Defensively, Parker finished with a team high 22 digs while Isabelle Haverty finished with two block solos to lead the team in blocks. The team finished the regular season with a 7-24 record.