OVU netters fall in five sets

Ohio Valley University's Stephany Orjuela (12) and Dana Lichtendonk (2) go up for a double block during Thursday's match inside the Snyder Activity Center against Trevecca Nazarene University. The Trojans defeated the Fighting Scots in five sets. Photo by Jay W. Bennett.

VIENNA – Trevecca Nazarene University finally recorded its first Great Midwest Athletic Conference win here Thursday evening inside the Snyder Activity Center as the Trojans of head coach Jayme Crowley held off host Ohio Valley University in five sets – 17-25, 25-10, 25-23, 13-25 and 15-10.

The Trojans (4-13, 1-7) had just one player finish with double figures in the kill column – Claire Reinthaler’s 11 – but the Fighting Scots (6-11, 2-7) weren’t able to overcome some communication issues as well as 15 service errors.

A double block by Macee Bingham (8 kills, 12 digs) and Madison Clements (8 kills) on Fighting Scot Carolina Ramirez, who had a match-high 14 downed spikes, gave TNU the first point of set five and the visitors never trailed.

Bingham, who added 13 assists, put two more to the floor for a 3-0 lead. Ohio Valley, which returns to action at 7 p.m. today when Kentucky Wesleyan invades the SAC, closed to within two at 6-4 when Maria Cordoba floated toward the net and registered a downed spike from one of Stephany Orjuela’s match-high 50 assists.

A stuff at the net by Clements on OVU’s Jessica Rafay (13 kills) put the Trojans in front 8-4 and OVU still trailed by four at 10-6 following a kill by Fa’aaliga Mikaele, who recorded a dozen.

An ace by Dana Lichtendonk, who had four of those along with eight downed spikes, was followed by a Ramirez kill, which was aided by one of Kaitlin Farrah’s 15 digs during the rally. Despite trailing just 12-9, the Fighting Scots couldn’t get any closer and Reinthaler passed the ball to Miranda Bingham, who recorded her 24th assist, when Jordan Sprinkle registered a kill on match point.

“We want to get them all, but we just made too many errors and it’s on us,” admitted OVU first-year head coach Marlon Sano, who also got 15 digs from Mikaele and libero Kalyn Makimoto. “Unfortunately, that’s kind of how we’ve been all season long. We’re playing up and down.

“We’re new and we’re young, but that’s got to stop and we have to take control of opportunities when we have them and we just didn’t this time. We’re growing and we’re learning. We’re making progress, but we just need to make the progress faster. The biggest point is consistency for us.”

OVU, which ended the opening set with an ace by Farrah, couldn’t keep the momentum going.

In set three, the hosts led 18-16 and again at 23-22 when Cordoba and Ramirez double blocked Macee Bingham, but the Trojans tallied the final three points before faltering in set four and then winning the decisive fifth set.

Lichtendonk and TNU libero Danielle Moll, who had a team-high 14 digs, tied for match-high honors with four aces apiece. Gracie Pierce chipped in 10 digs and Mary Holmberg added six kills for the victors.