Akron, Ohio -- The Youngstown State volleyball team got three aces in the fifth set and a match-high 17 kills from Missy Hundelt to beat Binghamton 27-25, 21-25, 20-25, 25-18, 15-13 on Friday in the opening match of the Akron Zips Invitational.
After being out-aced 10-4 through the first three sets, the Penguins had just one receiving error in the final two sets while posting four aces. In the fifth, Casey D'Ambrose had one at match point, Chelsea Guerrieri's ace gave YSU a 13-11 lead, and Hundelt's gave the Guins a 9-5 advantage.
Hundelt led all attackers with 17 kills, and the junior right-side hitter had just three errors in 35 attempts for a .400 attack percentage. Her 17th kill gave YSU a side out when the score was tied at 13-13 in the fifth, and she also had a kill to save a Binghamton set point in the first. Alexis Egler and Jackie Carlisle both posted 11 kills, and Aly Ryan had seven kills and a match-high five blocks.
The win was YSU's seventh in a row, and the Penguins have now matched their win total from the previous two seasons combined. YSU is now 7-2, and Binghamton is 1-7.
The Bearcats received a stalwart effort from junior middle blocker Grace Vickers, who posted 16 kills without an error in 21 swings. Iva Partaleva added 16 kills, and two other Bearcats finished in double figures in kills. Xiomara Ortiz registered a match-high 21 digs.
Youngstown State overcame a 5-0 deficit in the first with a 7-1 run, and the Penguins eventually took a 19-13 lead on a blocking error. Binghamton scored seven of the next eight points to tie the set at 20, and the Bearcats later scored three straight points to go up 25-24. Hundelt's kill tied the set at 25, and the Penguins scored the next two points on a Shannon Watson kill and an error by Partaleva.
Binghamton trailed 16-13 in the second before closing the set on a 12-5 run, and the Bearcats won the fourth set 25-20.
YSU switched from a 6-2 offense to a 5-1 after the third set, and the Penguins proceeded to hit .406 in the set and convert 15 of their 18 side-out chances. YSU led the entire length and led by at least four the rest of the way after Carlisle's kill made the score 10-6.
The Penguins went on a 5-1 run and led 10-5 in the fifth following a block by Ryan and Egler, but Binghamton rallied. The Bearcats scored six of the next seven points to tie the decisive set at 11, but they were never able to take the lead. Ryan's kill gave the Penguins a side out, and Guerrieri's ace made the score 13-11. Binghamton scored the next two points to tie the set at 13, but Hundelt's kill and D'Ambrose's ace gave YSU the win.
Youngstown State will try to push its winning streak to eight this evening when it plays SIU-Edwardsville at 5 p.m.