CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – Taylor Joens picked up a team-leading four kills in the final set Saturday as SIUE volleyball downed Southeast Missouri in five sets.
Get The Latest News!
Don't miss our top stories and need-to-know news everyday in your inbox.
SIUE improved to 11-4 overall and continues to lead the Ohio Valley Conference with a 4-0 record. The Cougars won the match 18-25, 25-22, 26-24, 16-25, 15-11.
SEMO, 2-16 overall and 1-3 in the OVC, held a 4-0 lead in the fifth set only watch the Cougars come from behind. Joens also had her only service ace of the match in the fifth set.
"By the end of the match because we had been running the offense so well, she (Joens) was really one on one by set five," said SIUE Head Coach Leah Johnson. "She handled that really well."
Blocking also became a major factor for the Cougars with a season-high 16.
Carley Ramich led the charge with a career-high 10 blocks. Ramich is among the OVC leaders in blocks and improved her blocks per set to 1.11 for the season. Emily Harrison and Joens added seven and six blocks, respectively.
"We took some risks in blocking," said Johnson. "Fundamentally and technically our block got better as the match went on."
Johnson said the Cougars had to make some adjustments on the front line, showing Southeast Missouri different looks as the match progressed.
The Redhawks were powered by Krissa Gearring, who led all players with 26 kills. Madeline Grimm added 15 off the bench, and Nzingha Clarke added 12.
"I thought they (SEMO) played really well," said Johnson. "Their record is so deceiving, especially at home. They are a scrappy team and they are terminal."
SEMO collected 70 kills as a team, the most by an SIUE opponent this season.
"We were managing our serve and serve receive game a little better," said Johnson. "That showed up pretty well for us. We distributed the ball well. Everyone had a shared role. When someone stopped scoring, we immediately moved the ball away from them and someone else started scoring. That's the balance that our team benefits from this season."
SIUE's balanced offense had six players with seven or more kills for the match. Joens led the team with 11 followed by 10 from Jackie Scott.