New Concord, Ohio – The No. 18 Transylvania volleyball team endured a straight-set sweep at the hands of the No. 25 Muskingum University Muskies on Sunday afternoon at Muskingum Performance Court.
In a matchup of two of the top 25 teams in the country at the Division III level, the host Muskies reeled off a 25-23, 25-9, 25-18 win against the Pioneers in a nonconference regional tussle.
The Pioneers dropped to 14-4 overall while the Muskies improved to 14-1 on the season.
The opening set featured a back-and-forth affair between Transy and Muskingum as the Pioneers erased an early 3-0 deficit to eventually take a 9-6 advantage. The set saw its fair share of lead changes and ties as the two sides battled to a 20-20 tie following a kill from Jordan Horne. Horne scored two more consecutive kills for the Pioneers as the Muskies and Pioneers forged a 22-22 score.
Muskingum logged two crucial points to secure a 24-22 advantage to serve for set point. The Pioneers scored on a Muskies attacking error to cut the score to 24-23, but Muskingum came up with the 25th point on the ensuing rally to squeeze out their closest win of the three sets.
The second set all belonged to Muskingum as the Pioneers were plagued by 10 errors for a negative attacking percentage. Muskingum, meanwhile, committed just one error as the home team manifested together multiple scoring runs for the 25-9 win.
Trying to rebound from a 2-0 set deficit, the Pioneers found themselves embroiled in a tighter set during the third. But with the set tied at 6-6, Muskingum scored six of the next seven points in the set to craft a 12-7 lead and would not relinquish it for the rest of the way until completing a 25-18 win.
Ellie Stigger led the Pioneers with 11 kills to go with three blocks and two digs. Hannah Talkers led the Pioneers with 25 assists and added 12 digs and one kill. Sylvie Miller led Transylvania with 18 digs.
Abby Wills registered five digs on the day as the senior defensive specialist became the seventh Pioneer to cross over into the 1,000-career dig mark for her career.
The Pioneers return to play on Wednesday, October 2 as they visit the Spalding University Eagles in Louisville, Kentucky. Opening serve is scheduled for 7:00 p.m from Columbia Gym.
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