Lexington, Ky. – In a rematch of last year's conference tournament championship match, the No. 21 Transylvania volleyball team swept the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology Fightin' Engineers 25-19, 25-18, 25-18 on Saturday afternoon at the Beck Center.
The Pioneers claimed their 20th victory of the season and moved to 5-0 in Heartland Collegiate Atheltic Conference play as they returned the favor to the Engineers, who won the teams' regular-season meeting and championship match in 2018. Rose-Hulman fell to 12-13 overall and picked up its first loss of conference play to drop to 4-1.
In all three sets, the Pioneers shed ambitious charges by the Engineers to close out the back end of each set with surgical precision.
Transylvania registered a .379 attacking percentage in the first set as Stigger and Emmie Bender each found the target on the other end of the floor to the tune of four kills apiece. Trailing 16-13, Rose-Hulman fought back to tie up the first set at 17-17, but the Pioneers scored five straight points as Hadley Trenaman punctuated the run with one of her match-high three aces for a 22-17 advantage. Jordan Horne closed out the set with a kill to give the Pioneers a 25-19 and a 1-0 set lead.
Stigger anchored the front line to start the second set as the Pioneers built a 6-2 advantage. The Engineers responded with a 7-1 swing to grab a 9-7 lead. With the second set later tied at 13-all, the Pioneers outscored the Engineers 12-5 down the stretch to capture their second set of the day.
A fast start by the Pioneers in the third set quickly placed the home team in winning position. The Pioneers broke open a 1-1 tie by scoring seven straight points with Sylvie Miller on side out; Stigger and Horne led a parade of kills for an 8-1 Transy lead. Behind a run that featured two aces, the Engineers again closed tightly, cutting Transylvania's lead to 12-10 before Stigger reemerged with a flurry of hard hits to boost the Pioneers to a 20-16 advantage. Transylvania scored four of the final five points to put the match on ice.
Horne finished the day with nine kills and three blocks. The Pioneers outgained the Engineers in kills by a 45 to 29 margin while amassing a .351 attacking percentage over three sets.
Transylvania returns to play on Wednesday, October 23, hosting the Franklin College Grizzlies in an HCAC contest. The first serve is set for 7:00 p.m. from the Beck Center.
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