Akron, Ohio -- The Youngstown State volleyball team had to go to overtime in two sets but emerged with a four-set victory over SIU-Edwardsville on Friday at the Akron Zips Invitational.
The Penguins dropped a lopsided first set 25-15 and trailed 21-16 in the second before mounting a rally. Alexis Egler and Jenna Cavanaugh both had 11 kills in the match, and they teamed up for a block that gave YSU a 27-25 victory in the fourth set. Cavanaugh posted 10 blocks for the second time this season.
Shannon Watson and Jackie Carlisle added 10 kills apiece for YSU, which won for the eighth straight match and improved to 8-2. With their eight wins, the Penguins have surpassed their win total from the previous two seasons combined.
YSU posted 12 blocks in the match while SIUE had just four.
Brooke Smith had 15 kills and 12 digs for the Cougars, who dropped to 3-5.
SIUE limited Youngstown State to seven kills in the opening set, and the Cougars overcame an early 3-0 deficit to post a 25-15 victory. After falling behind 3-0, SIUE scored 11 of the next 12 points to take an 11-4 lead. YSU did not get closer than six the rest of the set.
The Cougars led 21-16 in the second set before the Penguins mounted a comeback. Jackie Carlisle posted three consecutive kills, and Chelsea Guerrieri followed with an ace to make the score 21-20. The score went to 23-23 after a Jenna Cavanuagh kill was surrounded by three bad sets, and a block by Hundelt and Cavanaugh gave the Penguins set point. SIUE was able to save two set points before back-to-back kills by Shannon Watson and Egler gave the Guins a 27-25 win.
YSU did not trail after reaching three points in the third set and hit .522 to cruise to a 25-15 win. A block by Hundelt and Cavanaugh with the score 13-10 started a 7-1 run that gave YSU a 20-11 advantage. SIUE got no closer than seven the rest of the set.
The Penguins scored eight straight points as part of a 9-1 run in the fourth set to go up 19-11, but they had to fight off the Cougars in the end. SIUE cut the margin to 20-17 after a block of Watson, and the Cougars scored four straight points once YSU took at 24-20 advantage. Cavanaugh's kill made the score 25-24 YSU, and a Hundelt kill put the Guins ahead 26-25 to set up the block by Cavanaugh and Egler.
Youngstown State will go for its ninth consecutive win on Saturday against Akron at 2 p.m.