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Volleyball rebounds to beat APSU

The Belmont volleyball team rebounded from a tough loss Friday to defeat conference opponent Austin Peay State University in four sets.

The win was a regrouping for the Bruins and was helped by the team playing its style, said Belmont coach Tony Howell.

“I’m really proud of how the girls regrouped from last night and came in today,” said Howell. “Basically, we had our game plan last night and that was just to come out and play our style and to play energetic and be dynamic.”

The Bruins were led by freshman Arianna Person who finished with 19 kills and three service aces. Libero Emily Richards led the team in digs with 16, and Emma Price led the team in assists with 49.

Belmont fell behind 0-3 early in the first set, but then went on a six-point run, capped off by two straight service aces from Person. This forced APSU to call a timeout early in the set.

The Bruins led by as many as five points in the first set, but the Lady Governors continually rallied to bring the score closer. Belmont won the first set 25-20 after a run of four straight points to close it out.

The second set also started out competitive as the two teams traded points back and forth. Belmont jumped out to a big lead in the set as they scored three or four points for every APSU point.

Belmont won the second set 25-16 after two kills by junior Jocelyn Youngdahl, and a Person kill ended the set.

Facing a two-set deficit, the Lady Governors rallied in the third set, jumping out to a 6-1 lead and never trailing for the rest of the set. The Bruins lessened the lead down to a point, but APSU was able to hold them off.

APSU won the third set by a score of 25-19.

The fourth set started off as the closest one yet as the teams traded points back and forth. There were seven ties in the set with the final tie happening at a score of 13-13.

After the tie, the Bruins took advantage of two attack errors by APSU and a kill from Youngdahl to take a 16-13 lead, prompting an APSU timeout.

Belmont would maintain the lead for the rest of the set and a kill by Person clinched the set and the match for the Bruins at 25-19.

“I definitely think that our passes and our defense were awesome and obviously our setter really put balls up where they needed to be,” said Person. “It was a real team effort.”

The Bruins next game is against crosstown rival Lipscomb. The last game between the two schools was in 2011.

“We’re excited to get the Battle of the Boulevard back. It should never have gone away, but it did so we’re excited about that,” said Howell. “They’ve got a lot of really good players on their team so we’ve just got to play hard, play strong and make sure we play our style.”

Lipscomb will host Belmont on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.

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