BETHANY, Okla. — Led by sophomore Taylor Golmen, the John Brown University volleyball team racked up a season-high 13 aces and ran away in sweeping fashion (25-12, 25-18 , 25-19) against Southwestern Christian (Okla.) Thursday night (Sept. 1) inside Pickens-Springer Gymnasium.
Although John Brown’s (4-2, 1-1 Sooner Athletic) strike was unspectacular, the blocking effort helped the outstanding service numbers post the Golden Eagles’ first sweep of the 2022 season.
Junior Savanna Riney led all Golden Eagles in kills (8) and recoveries (15), while Golmen’s five aces bolstered the JBU service effort that included three more from seniors Morgan Fincham and Jillian Blackman.
Junior Micah Fouts paced the frontline defensive effort, posting a solo dismissal and five assists. Senior Ellie Lampton added a trio of assists, while Riney and Golmen each contributed a pair, which allowed host Eagles (4-3, 0-2) to end the night with a mere mark of 0.076 (28-19-118).
The Golden Eagle offense fared a little better, finishing the game at .152 (33-16-112), with all eight kills from Riney. Rookie Ella Yarborough notched a career-best six kills, hitting .545 on the night. Lampton, Golmen and junior Delaney Barnes each added four dismissals in John Brown’s first league win of the campaign.
In the back row, senior Jillian Blackman provided 15 digs, while senior Lauren Cloud dished out 17 assists and senior Morgan Fincham added 11.
Makenna Thomas’ 11 kills (.143) led all hitters, but no other Eagle could provide more than six completions. Treasure Mozon was busy in the back row with 25 digs.
The Golden Eagles, with the win, moved to 17-2 all-time against Southwestern Christian, including an 8-1 mark inside Pickens-Springer Gymnasium.
John Brown will return to action on Tuesday (September 6) when the Golden Eagles make their Siloam Springs debut inside Bill George Arena. JBU will host Langston, Okla., in a game at 7 p.m., which will be broadcast live on the SAC Sports Network.
Oklahoma City 3, John Brown 0
OKLAHOMA CITY — The striking Golden Eagle, which had led the Sooner Athletic through the first two weeks of the season, faltered, hitting just .120 as the John Brown University volleyball team fell 3-0 ( 25-23, 25-21, 25-23) in their league opener at Oklahoma City on Wednesday, Aug. 31, inside Abe Lemons Arena.
John Brown led or was tied past the 20-point mark in all three sets, but was unable to close his chances. The Stars, meanwhile, nearly doubled the visitors’ mark as City hit .232 (41-15-112), moving to 4-1 and 2-0 in conference.
The close match featured 35 ties and 17 lead changes, including eight lead changes in the third set alone.
JBU led by no less than four in the first set, 16-12, but City scored five of the next six points and then broke a tie of 21 by scoring four of the next six points. Senior Ellie Lampton’s victory gave the visitors a 21-20 advantage in the second set with the aim of tying the game to one apiece, but Oklahoma City then picked up five straight points, fueled by three consecutive errors from John Brown .
The Golden Eagles’ 5-1 outburst to open the third quickly evaporated as the teams traded leads eight times. Armed with a 21-20 lead, John Brown conceded the next three points, but kills from juniors Savanna Riney and Delaney Barnes drew the visitors within one, 24-23. City got their first match point though, closing the game.
Although John Brown didn’t feature a hitter in double-digit finishes, Riney boasted nine kills on 34 hits, while Lampton added seven on 21 attempts (.286). Sophomore Taylor Golmen hit .400 but was limited to just 10 attempts on the night.
At fullback, senior Jillian Blackman had 16 digs and senior Morgan Fincham passed out 15 assists on John Brown’s 34 kills (34-21-108).
Rylee Steward and Catelyn Vargas contributed 14 and 10 kills respectively to City’s attacking effort and Emma Vance racked up 21 assists in the victory.