WINONA LAKE – The Grace College volleyball team continued its undefeated start to 2014 with victories over Indiana Tech and St. Xavier on Saturday at the Wyndham Classic.
The Lady Lancers (4-0) pulled past the Warriors in extra sets and swept St. Xavier to close out the tournament.
Grace’s final match on Friday was a five-set win against IU-Kokomo, and the Lady Lancers followed suit with a five-setter against Indiana Tech on Saturday.
The Warriors (1-2) took advantage of a slow start by the Lady Lancers to win 25-15 in the opening set. Grace evened the match with a 25-20 win in the following set, thanks to five kills from Calah Kruse. Two aces from Laken Chaney sparked Grace early in the game.
Grace seemed on its way to a third-set victory with a 17-13 lead, but seven straight points from the Warriors swung the match back in Indiana Tech’s favor. The Warriors made several late plays to hold on for a two-point win.
The Lady Lancers’ offense was at its peak in the fourth set, ripping off 18 kills on a .316 percentage. Ellie Harp dished out 15 assists, and Grace Woolsey had six kills as Grace won 25-21 to force a fifth set.
The tiebreaker could not have started worse for Grace. The Warriors opened the game with a 5-0 lead, but Grace rallied with five straight points of its own to force a Cougars’ timeout. The score went back-and-forth down the stretch and was tied at 14-14. Woolsey then produced a solo block point, and Megan Johnson crushed the winning kill to move Grace to 3-0 on the young season.
Woolsey finished with 16 kills, 7 block assists and 1 solo block in the win, and Kruse poured in 17 kills, 12 digs and 2 aces. Harp handed out 50 assists to go along with 10 digs, and Hannah Clemmons led all players with 21 digs.
Johnson chipped in 11 kills on a .286 percentage with three block assists, and Tori Bontrager had seven kills on a .462 percentage with three block assists.
Grace made short work of St. Xavier in its second match of the day. Megan Johnson sparked the opening-set victory with five kills as Grace won 25-20.
After the first set, the Lady Lancers asserted their dominance. The Cougars (1-1) were held to just two kills in the second game, falling 25-8. Grace then went on to conclude the sweep with a 25-18 win, ending the tournament on a kill by freshman Kari Feddema.
Ellie Harp was named the Wyndham Classic Most Valuable Player, and Grace Woolsey also appeared on the All-Tournament Team.
Grace will play again next weekend in Daytona Beach, Fla., in part of the Embry-Riddle Tournament.