ORLANDO, Fla. - The Harding volleyball team finished the Rollins Regional Tournament on a high note Sunday defeating Valdosta State, 3-2 and sweeping host team Rollins, 3-0. The Lady Bisons improve to 21-5 on the season.
Freshman setter Amber Schinzing led the Lady Bisons offense with a total of 85 assists and captured a career high 44 assists against Rollins.
In the first match against Gulf South Conference East Division foe Valdosta State, the Lady Bisons fell behind early in the first set but tried to claw their way back but the Lady Blazers took set one, 25-21. Harding jumped out and took set two, 25-20. The Lady Bisons again found themselves trailing in set three but a last ditch effort wasn't enough dropping set three, 25-19. In set four, the Lady Bisons trailed 18-16 but a late rally on a 9-3 run gave them the set, 25-21. Harding jumped out to take a commanding 13-5 lead in the fifth set and went onto take the set, 15-11.
Senior Sarah Phipps led Harding with 17 kills and nine digs in the match. Junior Emily Tate led the Lady Bisons defense with 16 digs.
Valdosta State had had 70 kills in the match but had 29 hitting errors. The Lady Blazers had four players in double-figure kills. Leading the way was Ruthie King who had 20 kills. She also picked up 11 digs in the match.
In the final match of the tournament, Harding fell behind early in set one but battled back and closed the set on an 8-5 run for a 25-22 score. In set two, the Lady Bisons jumped out to take a quick 15-6 lead and didn't look back taking the set, 25-19. Harding again led 15-8 in the third set but Rollins battled back to come within two, 23-21. Harding quickly had two kills for the third set win.
Phipps captured a double-double with 12 kills and 11 digs in the match. Fellow senior Manuela Nesheva had 15 kills in the match. Schinzing had a career high 12 digs for the Lady Bisons.
Nikki Hartman was the only Rollins player in double-figure kills with 12.
The Lady Bisons will be back in action Thursday, traveling to Arkansas Tech for a key GSC West Division matchup at 7 p.m.