Posted: Sep 07, 2019
JACKSON, Miss. – The Owls played hard on the final day of the Belhaven/Millsaps Invitational but was unable to pull a win, falling 3-2 to Philander Smith College and 3-0 to Belhaven College on Saturday, Sept. 7 in Heidelberg Gymnasium.
The Owls faced a scrappy team in Philander Smith who was dedicated to preventing the ball from touching the ground on their side of the net.
The W faced an equally yoked team and fell to the Panthers in five sets (29-27, 22-25, 22-25, 25-15, 15-13). Haley McMurphey led the Owls with 29 total attacks for 12 kills and Sadie Mitchell led the Owls defense with 23 digs. Mary Grace Prine stepped into her role as primary setter to lead the Owls with 21 assists.
"This match ultimately came down to some costly mistakes on our end," said head coach Roxanne Hernandez. "Our defense matched evenly with theirs and I think statistically we were evenly matched but we really struggled to put the ball away," she continued. "This was an even matchup for us but we just couldn't come out on top this time."
After playing five sets with only a 30-minute break, the Owls struggled to get into the game against Belhaven University. The W were slow to react and could not prevent errors to fall 3-0 (25-8, 25-14, 25-22).
"Coming off 5 set, our serve receives fell apart at some pretty important times and our hitters just couldn't get into a rhythm," state Hernandez. "While we tried to answer back a few times, Belhaven just got into a strong serving groove and we just didn't have the mental toughness to answer back."
The Owls will back in action Tuesday when they travel to Rhodes College for midweek action. First serve is set for 6 p.m.