Badger Athletics - Spring Hill College News
Senior Sha Sha Buchanan recorded 18 kills for the Badgers
Senior Sha Sha Buchanan recorded 18 kills for the Badgers
Volleyball - Wed, Dec. 4, 2013

SIOUX CITY, Iowa – The 23rd-ranked Spring Hill College volleyball team continued play in the Pool Play Round of the 2013 NAIA Volleyball National Championship Tournament with a 3-2 (20-25, 27-25, 22-25, 25-12, 15-13) upset victory over the 9th-ranked Vangard University (Calif.) Lions at the Tyson Events Center on Wednesday night.

The Badgers enjoyed a quick start and built a 15-9 lead over Vangard (22-8, 0-2) in the 1st set, but the Lions battled back with a late 8-point run to take a 25-20 win.

SHC also took a fast 6-2 lead in the 2nd set only to see the Lions rally twice again to tie the set at 6-6 and at 14-14. Tied at 18-18, the Badger regained a 19-18 lead with a block by Madison Seuzeneau and Megan Haber. SHC earned a 23-19 sparked by a gutsy defensive stand by their front line. The Lions refused to die, however, and cut the deficit to 23-22 and then tied the set at 24-24 and 25-25 until a cross-court kill by senior Sha Sha Buchanan gave SHC the win at 27-25.

In the 3rd set, the Badgers again took a quick lead only to see the Lions roar back to tie the match at 14-14 and then take a 17-16 lead. Vangard continued to lead at 21-19, but a two-point SHC rally tied the match at 21-21. A block, a service ace and kill gave the Lions a 24-21 advantage until Buchanan found the back line to make it 24-22. Vangard closed out the set with a kill down the line to take a 25-22 victory and a 2-1 lead in the match.

The 4th set witnessed an early showcase of strength by SHC who used an early 8-point run to build a 14-3 cushion highlighted by several powerful kills by Buchanan. The bulge later grew to 19-8 and 23-10 for the Badgers who forced a 5th set with a 25-12 victory.

Spring Hill rallied from a two-point deficit to tie the deciding set at 5-5, but Vangard held an 8-5 lead as the teams switched courts. The Badger valiantly fought back to tie the set at 11-11 and then claimed a 13-12 advantage with Buchanan's 18th kill of the match. A block by the senior Buchanan made it a 14-13 SHC lead and a final attack error by the Lions gave Spring Hill the 15-13 and 3-2 win.

Buchanan's 18 kills paced the Badgers as Haber tallied 16 kills and Taryn Nash handed out 48 assists. On defense, Buchanan added 4.5 blocks and Nash collected 16 digs. As a team, SHC hit for a .199 average (59-22-186) with 14 blocks, two aces and 85 digs.

Vangard was led by Charlotte Heerlyn with 18 kills, Carla Cantarella with 32 assists and Kelly Heenan with 32 digs. The Lions hit .125 (63-39-192) with 91 digs, five aces and seven blocks.

Spring Hill (37-4, 1-1) will finish pool play on Thursday at 5:45 p.m. versus the 19th-ranked Wayland Baptist University (Texas) Pioneers (33-6, 2-0) with a bid to the tournament's elimination bracket on the line. SHC has never advanced to the elimination bracket in any of its previous three trips to the NAIA National Tournament.