MOUNT PLEASANT – A good night at the net blocking was not enough for the Iowa Wesleyan College volleyball team as it lost in three sets to St. Ambrose University in a Midwest Collegiate Conference match Wednesday night at Ruble Arena.
The Queen Bees defeated the Tigers 25-22, 25-15, 29-27, as SAU hitters Amy Royer and Tori Matzen alone combined for more kills than the entire IWC team. St. Ambrose improved to 21-11 overall, 4-2 in the MCC, while Wesleyan saw a three-match winning streak snapped and dropped to 8-20 overall, 1-5 in conference.
Royer and Matzen together posted 33 of the Bees’ 48 kills, with Royer piling up 19 and Matzen adding 14 more for the visitors. The Tigers as a team finished with just 28 kills against 25 hitting errors, hitting .021 for the match including negative hitting performances in the first two sets.
The Bees took control of the match by coming through with a run late in the first set and then controlling the second set as the Tigers struggled with hitting errors. The first set was tied at 15-15 when St. Ambrose scored eight of the next nine points to get to set point at 24-16. B.J. Wagy (Sr.-Cedar Rapids, Iowa) got a solo block to stop the run and then was able to serve IWC back within 24-22 before a service error ended the first set.
SAU easily won the second set as Wesleyan never got it going and had 11 attack errors. The Tigers rebounded in the third set and looked good to send the match to a fourth set, taking a 22-19 lead late. The Bees came back with three straight points to tie, and St. Ambrose gained the upper hand, getting to match point at 24-23. IWC saved four match points as the teams alternated side outs, but the Queen Bees finally closed it out with two kills from Matzen.
Allegra Tennis (Sr.-Madison, Wis.) led IWC offensively with seven kills and a .412 attack percentage. Wagy had 17 digs to lead defensively, while Kendra Zimmerman (Sr.-Green Bay, Wis.) posted 16 digs and Katie Jammer (Sr.-Green Bay, Wis.) added 15. Zimmerman also led the Tigers in assists with 19.
Wesleyan stayed close to St. Ambrose in part because of its presence at the net. The Tigers finished with 11 blocks in the match, with Wagy recording six (two solos, four assisted) and Tennis and Beth Guzman (Jr.-San Bernardino, Calif.) both adding five block assists each.
Iowa Wesleyan will again be in MCC play for its next match Tuesday at William Penn University at 7 p.m.