Shreveport, Louisiana - The 10th-ranked Trinity volleyball team concluded its regular season schedule with a hard-fought 3-2 victory Sunday over Southwestern (TX) University at the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Cross Divisional.
After dropping the first set 25-18, the Tigers rallied for two convincing wins by scores of 25-15 and 25-17. Southwestern pulled off a 25-19 win in the fourth, then Trinity capped off the weekend by winning 15-11 in the fifth to finish 3-0 over the two-day event.
Trinity took the first two points of the match, but it was Southwestern that controlled the first set early by running out to an 11-5 lead. The Tigers cut into a 14-7 lead by scoring five consecutive points answered back to take an 18-12 advantage. Trinity couldn't put together more than two straight points the rest of the way and Southwestern held on for the lead.
The Tigers posted a .375 hitting percentage to key a win in the second set. Southwestern got within four points late in the set, but Trinity scored six of the final seven points to pull away and tie the match at 1-1.
The third set was even better for the Tigers, who turned a narrow one-point advantage to a commanding 17-9 lead by scoring seven unanswered points. Southwestern never got closer than a six-point deficit the rest of the way and Trinity led 2-1 overall after hitting .455 in the set.
Southwestern came out hot in the fourth by scoring six of the first seven points, but Trinity rallied to take the lead minutes later with a 10-2 run that made it a 13-10 Tiger lead. The Pirates bounced back in front 17-14 with a run of their own, then answered another Trinity run by scoring the final three points to force a fifth set.
Trinity opened the decisive fifth set with six unanswered points and wound up with a match-best .474 hitting percentage. Southwestern got within two points at 6-8, but the Tigers scored four of the next five to effectively seal the win.
The Tigers completed the regular season with a 24-5 overall record and a 15-1 mark in the SCAC, while Southwestern falls to 16-11 overall and 12-4 in conference.
Trinity is the SCAC regular season co-champion after finishing in a tie with fourth-ranked Colorado College in the final conference standings.
Madeline McKay led the Tigers with 15 kills and hit .371 in the matchup.
Avery Tuggle posted a double-double with 13 kills and a team-leading 17 digs.
Sarah Mullens chalked up 16 digs in the match. Mullens became Trinity's all-time leader in digs during Saturday's matches with Austin (TX) College and host Centenary (LA) College. The Tiger senior now has 1,974 digs to her credit.
Jade Schoenberger hit .370 with 13 kills and also blocked six shots.
Katrina Lieberman accounted for 53 assists, increasing her season total to 1,137.
Emma Funk recorded eight kills and a .467 hitting percentage.
The Tigers will compete in the SCAC Tournament, to be held next Friday through Sunday in Irving, Texas. Trinity will be the second-seed and will take on the winner of the Southwestern (TX) University vs Austin (TX) College match at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday.