Bruins fall to #12 Northwestern in five

Bellevue forced their second five-setter of the day but couldn't quite spring the upset
Bellevue forced their second five-setter of the day but couldn't quite spring the upset

BALDWIN CITY, Kan. -- Coming off a five-set heart-breaker earlier in the day the Bellevue University volleyball team dropped a five-set affair to No. 12 Northwestern College on Friday evening at the Baker University Tournament. The match was the second of four scheduled to be played between Friday and Saturday.

The Bruins looked strong early, winning the opening set by a convincing 25-15 count but Northwestern went on to take the next two sets by 25-23 and 25-10 verdicts, respectively. BU held a 21-18 lead in the fourth set but four straight Red Raider points put Northwestern up 22-21 and had numerous match points but Bellevue showed their resiliency, going on to win 30-28 and forcing a decisive fifth set. The fifth set was generally close until Northwestern pulled away for a 15-1_ win.

Offensively, freshman Shayla Scanlan led the attack with 15 kills, her fourth straight match with at least 10 kills and sixth in her last seven matches. Sophomore Rachel Barr finished with eight kills and senior Beth Walker added seven to go along with her 36 assists to direct the attack and 14 digs to post her eighth double-double. Sophomore Rachel Wald and freshman Marylyn Mozena each finished the match with six kills.

Sophomore Taylor Holz paced the Bruins with 21 digs and classmate Addison Smith added 13. The Red Raiders out-hit Bellevue .181-.130 on the match while Northwestern also won the dig battle 72-70.

To date Bellevue has played one of the strongest schedules in the nation as seven of the 12 matches they've played have come against teams that have either been ranked or receiving votes while their earlier match was played against an unbeaten Ottawa team that started the season receiving votes. Bellevue is 2-5 in contests against teams either ranked or receiving votes.

Bellevue (5-7) is back in action with a pair of contests tomorrow where they hope to halt their losing streak at two matches. The Bruins take on Graceland at 11 a.m. and hosts Baker at 7 p.m.