By Nate Tenopir, Sports Editor
The UNO women’s volleyball team came back from two Friday losses with a pair of wins Saturday, doubling their win total to four on the season. The Mavs bounced back from two four-set losses with a five-set win and a sweep in their final match.
UNO was led by the consistent play of junior middle blocker Lizzy Mach, who totaled 43 kills and had a hitting percentage of .296 in the tournament. Junior outside hitter Natalie Ebke was another bright spot for the Mavs.
After struggling with just a -.009 hitting percentage in the first two matches, Ebke bounced back to provide 37 kills and hit .301 in the two wins on Saturday.
As a team the Mavs hit for a .154 average in their four tournament games, and won back-to-back matches for the first time all year.
It was a career weekend for senior libero Angie Reicks, who was expected to break the UNO mark for career digs during the season. Saturday afternoon Reicks did just that.
Facing Central Oklahoma, Reicks needed just 9 digs to break the record set by former Mav Kevin Campbell. The senior libero would come up with 15 to end the weekend with a career mark of 1,789.
After losing both Friday matches against Tarleton and Abilene Christian 3-1, the Mavs were in danger of dropping their ninth straight when they faced Dallas Baptist Saturday morning. For just the second time all year UNO won the first set of the match 25-19, then dropped the next two 19-25 and 23-25.
In the fourth set the match was tied at 12 when the Mavs took the lead for good. The Patriots closed the set with four straight errors, and UNO forced a fifth set with a 25-18 fourth set win.
Ebke and senior middle blocker Brittany Hanssen combined to score the last six kills in the fifth, and get the Mavs a 16-14 set victory and 3-2 match win. UNO returned to action later in the day, defeating Central Oklahoma in their first straight sets win all season.
The Mavs had their second highest hitting mark of the year, besting the Bronchos .243 to just .099. Ebke had her best hitting performance of the tournament, achieving a .394 mark on 16 kills.
Senior setter Emily Myers chipped in 34 assists, and Mach added 8 kills of her own on a .412 hitting percentage.
The first set was Central Oklahoma’s most competitive of the match, hanging with UNO until an eventual 25-23 win by the Mavs. In the second, UNO jumped out to a 17-5 lead and held the Bronchos to a -.027 attack percentage.
At one point, Central Oklahoma would call a timeout after five straight Maverick kills. But it was of no help as UNO would finish the set off 25-15 just minutes later.
In the third and final set, UNO would take control after a 7-7 tie and never look back. The Mavs would go on an 11-4 run to go ahead 18-11 and finish the set off 25-16 to earn the sweep.