Bulls Pick Up Five-Set Road Win At Bowling Green

Megan Wernette

BOWLING GREEN, OH – The University at Buffalo volleyball team found itself in a five-set match for the second straight night on the road, but the Bulls were victorious on Saturday night as UB scored a 3-2 win over Bowling Green.  With the victory, Buffalo is now 14-10 on the year and 6-6 in league play.

The Bulls took the contest 18-25, 25-23, 25-16, 19-25, 15-11 as UB outhit Bowling Green .181 to .152. After the Falcons won the first set easily, the Bulls fought their way back in the second. Leading 8-6, UB went on a quick 5-0 run as a kill from junior Kristina Nieves gave Buffalo the 13-6 advantage.  Buffalo continued to lead 23-19 before Bowling Green tied it up with four straight points.  The Bulls answered by scoring the final two points of the set, clinching it on a block from Rachel Sanks and Megan Wernette.

In the third set, Buffalo opened it by scoring the first six points. The Bulls added to their lead late as a kill from sophomore setter Tia Gleason opened up a 20-11 lead. The Bulls clinched the set on a kill from junior Polina Prokudina, giving Buffalo the 2-1 lead in the match.

The Falcons kept the match a live with a 25-19 win in the fourth, sending it to the fifth set. UB held a slim two-point advantage early on in the fifth set, but the two teams found themselves tied at 10-10.  Back-to-back kills from Wernette and sophomore Andrea Mitrovic gave UB the 12-10 lead as the Falcons called time out.  A block from Nieves and Mitrovic extended the lead to 13-10 before the Falcons scored the next point.  Leading 13-11, the Bulls got a BG service error and then an attack error ended the contest, sending the Bulls to victory.

Mitrovic led the way with 17 kills, Wernette added 13 and Sanks had 10. Nieves finished the night with nine kills and just one error, hitting .421 for the night. Prokudina also added nine kills.

Gleason finished with 31 assists as she played in the final four sets for the Bulls. She also added two service aces.

Defensively, senior Larra Bickelhaupt had a match-high 25 digs, pacing four Buffalo players in double figures. Mitrovic added 16 digs, while freshman Paige Beck had 14 digs and junior Hannah Watson had 12.

The Bulls finished with a season-high 16.0 blocks led by 10 from Wernette, including nine assists. Nieves and Mitrovic each had five blocks and Gleason finished with four.

Buffalo will return home to begin its final three-match homestand.  UB will face Kent State on Friday night at 6pm to kick things off.