Despite dropping the first game Tuesday, Pacific rallied to defeat Union in Four Rivers Conference action, 19-25, 25-17, 25-18.
Pacific (8-4, 2-0) followed the win with another FRC three-game win Thursday over Owensville.
Union (5-4, 1-1) rebounded to sweep St. James Thursday in league action. The Lady ’Cats play in the Chamois Tournament along with Linn, Chamois and Southern Boone Saturday.
“It was a good comeback win,” Pacific Head Coach Janel Brown said about Tuesday’s match. “Union came out and played hard in that first set. Rachael Bassett gave a clinic on how to jump serve and that hurt us. Luckily we fought back and found a way to win in three.”
Union Head Coach Angie Morris said her team has shown vast improvement.
“Last year, every time we played them, we always lost in two sets,” Morris said. “We played them pretty hard. We took the first set tonight, something I was very proud of, but unfortunately we couldn’t close it.”
Brown said Pacific had to make some adjustments to deal with Union’s aggressive serving.
“Instead of our normal three-person serve receive, we had to go back to a four-person group and change things up,” Brown said. “We gave them some different looks. We need to make sure we talked and knew what to do.”
Kersten McDonough paced Pacific with 13 kills, one block and one assist.
“If anyone comes to our games, they’re going to know that Kersten is our go-to player,” Brown said. “She did an excellent job tonight. She’s nursing a sore shoulder. We try to get her as many sets as we can, but try to get the ball to Emily Weaver, Allyson Armstrong or Ashley Hill.”
Morris complimented McDonough.
“Kersten is a good hitter,” Morris said. “She’s tough. She makes it look easy. I think we really made them work. They’re a very good team and they came back. They did well.”
Abby Spuhl had five kills while Weaver contributed four, Armstrong and Hill each had three and Amber Fuller closed with two kills.
Armstrong and Hill each had two blocks. Fuller also had one.
Armstrong served two aces while Weaver, Jackie Dann, Hill and Spuhl served one apiece.
Spuhl recorded 20 assists. Armstrong had two while McDonough, Dann and Fuller posted one apiece.
Union again served aggressively with 12 aces.
“That’s been something we’ve been working on, serving aggressively,” Morris said. “We’ve been trying to hit aggressively and block well.
Rachael Bassett served seven of those aces while Rebeccah Kramer served three and Victoria Kramer added two.
Clare Stowe led Union with six kills. Bassett added five, Jillian Johnston and Lauren Terschluse each had two and Emily Schroeder contributed one.
Stowe had four blocks while Bassett and Terschluse chipped in with one each.
Elli Aldrich and Rebeccah Kramer each had seven assists. Johnston added two.
In the first game, Union jumped out to an early lead, 9-3, on a service run by Bassett which included five aces.
Union led 20-9 at one point, but held off a late run to win, 25-19.
In the second game, Pacific took the early momentum and led 20-13 before Union made a late run. Pacific still won, 25-17.
In the third game, Armstrong recorded a kill to break a 7-7 tie and Pacific never trailed after that, winning 25-18.
Pacific picked up another huge league win at home over Owensville. The Lady Indians won, 25-22, 19-25, 26-24.
Owensville led 23-18 in the third game before Pacific rallied to win it.
“Owensville always plays us tough and we knew it was going to be a battle all night long,” Brown said. “Our defense really picked us up and played well. We knew going into the game it would be a big conference win, so we had to play well and get the victory. I’m very pleased with how the girls fought the entire night.”
McDonough finished the match with nine kills, nine digs and one block.
Weaver served the final seven points of the match, ending with two kills, two blocks and four digs.
Spuhl collected 18 assists, six digs and four kills.
Armstrong registered six kills, seven digs and one block.
Hill finished with 14 digs and four kills. Ellen Rogers had 12 digs. Dann added two digs. Fuller had two assists, one block and one dig.
Union went on the road to win at St. James, 25-14, 25-21.
Bassett led the team with nine kills. Johnston was next with five while Stowe and Terschluse each had two and Emily Schroeder added one.
Bassett and Stowe each had one block. Aldrich posted 10 assists while Rebeccah Kramer ended with seven and Johnston added two.
Union served 10 aces with Bassett netting six of them. Victoria Kramer served two while Aldrich and Schroeder served one apiece.