Nov. 29, 2012
Indianapolis, Ind. - In the fourth meeting between the two schools in the 2012 season, Hillsdale upset Grand Valley State on Thursday afternoon (Nov. 29) in the Midwest Region Tournament. The sixth-seeded Chargers knocked off #3 GVSU by a 3-1 score (25-27, 25-20, 25-17, 25-20), ending the Lakers' season.
It was the third time the teams met in November and for the fourth time this season. After Thursday's result, the schools split the four meetings. Grand Valley State defeated the Chargers 3-1 on Nov. 10 and swept HC by a 3-0 score in the GLIAC Tournament quarterfinals just four days later.
GVSU and Hillsdale were paired up in the 3-6 match, the opening contest of the regional tournament. With the loss, the Lakers end the year with a 25-8 record. Hillsdale advances with a 16-15 record and will face either Northwood or Ashland in tomorrow's semifinal match.
On Thursday, the Chargers notched more kills (58-45) and outhit GVSU (.201-.098). The Lakers did have more blocks (12-10) and aces (6-4), while both teams picked up 80 digs apiece.
Hillsdale raced out to an 8-2 advantage to start the first set and extended its lead to 17-11 before Grand Valley State battled back. The Lakers tied the set at 18-18 on a kill from sophomore Abby Aiken, then a kill from GLIAC Freshman of the Year Betsy Ronda and a service ace from senior Eno Umoh put GVSU ahead, 20-18.
Leading 23-19 after a solo block from junior Megan Schroeder, Grand Valley State looked in control until Hillsdale knotted the score at 24-24. Again tied at 25-25, Ronda and Umoh provide back-to-back kills to give the Lakers an early 1-0 lead in the match.
In set two, the Chargers pushed out to a 17-10 lead. GVSU was only able to pull back within four points at 24-20 after a combined block from Aiken and junior Abby Ebels. Hillsdale would even the match at one set apiece on the very next point.
The Lakers led 4-1 to start the third set after Ronda put down a kill from sophomore setter Clair Ruhenkamp. HC came back to own a 10-5 cushion, but Grand Valley State pulled back within 16-15 on a kill from Umoh. Hillsdale promptly answered with a 5-0 run that wasn't stopped until Umoh tallied another kill. At this point, the Chargers were on top, 21-16. Hillsdale would score four of the next five points to take a 2-1 lead in the match.
Set four saw the Chargers never trail, leading 9-4 in the early portion of the stanza. GVSU rallied from a 16-10 deficit to make the score 18-17 with a 7-2 surge. Hillsdale would answer by scoring the next three points and not allow the Lakers back in the contest. One final kill from the Chargers ended the set, match, and Grand Valley State's season.
Umoh led the way for GVSU in her final match in a Laker uniform. Named to the Daktronics All-Midwest Region First Team on Tuesday, the senior notched a team-best 14 kills, while adding four block assists and a pair of service aces. She finishes her career second all-time in GVSU history with 425 career block assists and third in the Laker record book with 509 total blocks.
Aiken also reached double-figures with 12 kills, while Ebels provided a match-high seven blocks (three solo, four assists) and five kills. Ebels' three solo rejections are a career-high. Junior Christina Canepa picked up 27 digs, while Ruhenkamp dished out 41 assists and notched a double-double with 13 digs. Ronda totaled 15 digs and seven kills.