Updated: Saturday, 29 Sep 2012, 11:52 PM EDT
Published : Saturday, 29 Sep 2012, 10:24 PM EDT
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FORT WAYNE, Ind. -- The IPFW women's volleyball team improved to 15-3 overall and took a commanding 5-1 record in the Summit League standings as they defeated North Dakota State on Saturday night 25-23, 19-25, 26-28, 25-15, 15-8.
Saturday night's win marks the first time this season that IPFW has won a five-set match. Megan Steenhuysen was the floor general for the Mastodons as she set a new season-best assist total with 65. She picked up her fifth double-double of the season by adding 19 digs.
Emily Spencer and Kendall Wienkes also recorded double-doubles for IPFW in the win over NDSU. Spencer led the team in kills by tying her season-high with 21. She and added 15 digs against the Bison while Wienkes chipped in with 11 kills and career-high 20 digs.
Jessie Manwaring and Tessa McGill impacted the match in a big way as McGill tied her season-best dig total of 29. Manwaring was dominating the action up front as she ended the night with 16 kills and eight blocks.
IPFW jumped out to a 4-1 lead in the first set. Hailie Ripley and Emily Spencer got involved right away with one kill each. NDSU moved on to cut the lead to 13-9 after an IPFW service error. The Bison followed that play by recording an ace to get within three points.
A great block from Jessie Manwaring pushed the score to 18-13 which forced NDSU to call a timeout. A second NDSU timeout came soon after as the 'Dons opened up a 21-14 lead. The Bison went on a run at the end of the set to pull within one point (24-23), but Haley Emenhiser gave IPFW a 1-0 lead with a kill.
The duo of Emily Spencer and Kendall Wienkes hurt NDSU early as the two combined for 13 kills in the opening set. Megan Steenhuysen and Tessa McGill also got off to great starts. Steenhuysen opened up the night with 18 assists and McGill recorded 10 digs.
The second set was completely opposite of the first as NDSU got off to the fast start. The Bison led 4-1 early and were able to expand their lead to 8-4 before IPFW burned their first timeout. Midway through the set it was NDSU with a 13-9 advantage. The Bison kept the momentum on their side as a 15-9 deficit forced Kelley Hartley Hutton to use her final timeout of the game. The lead increased to 20-15 and NDSU tied the match at 1-1 with a 25-19 win.
After a back and forth battle IPFW took a 7-6 lead in the third set off a Manwaring kill. IPFW went on a run and pushed the score to 10-7, forcing NDSU to use a timeout. The break in the action worked for the Bison as they quickly tied the game at 10-10. IPFW responded by going on a three-point run, but the streak ended with a service error. The second break in set three came after an IPFW timeout. The score was tied at 13-13, but NDSU used a service ace and a string of kills to grab a 17-13 edge. The 'Dons cut the lead to three (20-23) and a NDSU timeout was called. IPFW cut the lead to one and eventually tied the game at 24-24 off a kill from Sarah Heckman. The Bison held off the late charge and won the third set 28-26.
The Mastodons faced elimination entering the fourth set as they trailed in the match by a 2-1 margin. IPFW pushed the lead to three (11-8) and held that spread through the midway point. A service ace from McGill matched with kills from Heckman and Wienkes pushed the lead to 18-13 as the Bison burned a timeout. IPFW wouldn't be denied as the match was tied at 2-2 after a 25-15 win.
IPFW jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the fifth set, but the Bison collected themselves and cut the score to 4-3 off a kill from Megan Lambertson. Emenhiser sent a kill to the hardwood that gave IPFW a two point lead (7-5) and an attack error had the teams switch sides with IPFW leading 8-5. Manwaring came up with another huge block after the change and the Bison called for timeout with IPFW holding a 9-5 lead.
The Mastodons put two more points on the scoreboard before NDSU could call their second and final timeout. The Bison scored three-straight points out of the break which forced IPFW to stop the run with a timeout of their own. The strategy worked as IPFW held on to win the final set 15-8.
IPFW will return to action with a road contest at Omaha on Oct. 5. The next home game will be on Oct. 8 as the Mastodons play host to Western Illinois at 7 p.m.
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