Tuesday night, the stage was set. Conference opener. Rivalry game. For an athlete or any sports fan, it couldn’t get much better.
Nearby family members and many Blackburn students made the trip to Jacksonville to see what all of the buzz was about. To see if this new ‘fresh-faced’ volleyball team would live up to the hype.
Looking to bounce back after a 1-27 record during the 2016 season and to improve on a 2-2 start to the 2017 season, the Blackburn women’s volleyball team opened conference play against their St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SLIAC) rival, MacMurray College, on Sept. 5.
Prior to the game, senior captain Alexis Dick was excited to see how the team would stack up against a “very similar team,” but once the first set of the best of five match began, the Beavers were in clear control of their own destiny. Even during the lows of the match, fans could see the pieces coming together. Dick’s instincts were so good that at some moments it seemed as though she knew where the ball was going before it was even hit.The outstanding blocking skills and intimidating presence at the net displayed by freshman Kaitlyn Wiegand. The tremendous combo of hitting and serving from junior transfer Kendall Knop. The Beavers triple-threat were a force.
Blackburn swept the match in three straight sets, working through some tough moments when a few missed hits and communication errors allowed MacMurray to stay close before the Beavers were able to pull away for good by scores of 25-20, 25-15 and 25-22.
The team continues SLIAC play when they take on Principia and Eureka in St. Louis on Saturday.