Springfield, MO – Coming off a tough home opener loss Tuesday, August 28th, the Bears Volleyball team rebounded with two wins in a triangular hosted by Central Bible College (CBC).
The Bears squared off against CBC in their first match. In the opening set, the Bears set the tone early with a number digs and several of their 31 offensive kills for the match to take the first set 25-16. Sets two (25-16) and three (25-22) followed suit and the Bears were able to get their first win of the season with a sweep against the host school. Defensively Fr. Courtney Gillaspy (Medina, TX) led the Bears with five digs, So. Dani Gressel (South Haven, KS) put 12 of her 13 passes on target while Fr. libero Lauren Wells (Halstead, KS) put 86% of her passes on target. Offensively, upperclassman Jr. Sarah Sullivan (San Antonio, TX) and Sr. Katie Cruse (San Dimes, CA) had 11 and 10 kills respectively.
In the Bears second match of the day, they faced off against Champion Baptist (Hot Springs, AR). The Tigers of Champion Baptist came out ready to play and took the opening set 25-15. However, the Bears were able to adjust to the Tigers scrappy style of play and won the next three sets 25-16, 25-15, and 25-18. Champion Baptist’s decision not to block paved the way for 37 kills by the Bears led by Sullivan’s 17. Cruse was also in double digits with 11. So. Kalyn Switzer (Weatherford, OK) followed up a 25 assist match earlier in the day with a 31 assist match again Champion Baptist.
“I was very pleased with the team playing together and making necessary adjustments during the course of the matches today,” said Head Coach Shari Bryan. “It was good to get a couple wins under our belt as we get ready to play a regional competitor in Hillsdale.”
The Bears (2-1, 0-0) will host NCCAA Southwest Region rival Hillsdale Freewill Baptist (Moore, OK) at 5:00 PM CST on Tuesday, September 4th.
Haviland, KS – The Barclay College Volleyball women opened up their 2012 season against NAIA Southwestern College (Winfield, KS) on Tuesday night. Fans poured into Hockett Auditorium to catch their first glimpse of Lady Bears Volleyball. The Bears took early leads in every set, before falling in three sets to the Moundbuilders.
The Bears dropped the opening set 14-25 after leading 5-3 early. In the second set, the Bears led by as many as four before a big rally by the Moundbuilders helped them pull away late 18-25. All the long rallies in the third set seemed to go the Moundbuilders way as they got the sweep by taking the third set 17-25. The Bears were led by Junior Sarah Sullivan (San Antonio, TX) with five kills, followed by Senior Katie Cruse (San Dimes, CA) and Sophomore Megan Eby with three kills apiece. Transfer Sophomore Kalyn Switzer (Weatherford, OK) led the Bears with 11 assists, while Freshman Lauren Wells (Halstead, KS) contributed nine digs.
“Considering Southwestern’s offense will be one of the fastest offenses we will see all year, I was very pleased at our passing and our never die attitude,” first year Head Coach Shari Bryan concluded. “We need to cut back on our service errors and get better at covering our hitters and the tips. Overall, even though the outcome was not a “W” on the record, we showed a lot of composure and heart, which will lead to great things.”
The Bears (0-1, 0-0) will next travel to Central Bible College (Springfield, MO) on Saturday, September 1st for a match with CBC at 12:30 PM CST and Champion Baptist (Hot Springs, AR) at 2:30 PM.
Courtney Gillaspy of Medina High School in Medina, Texas agreed to join the 2012 Bears Volleyball team. Gillaspy was a three sport athlete in high school including volleyball, softball and basketball. She is a 5’6″ defensive specialist that helped lead her high school volleyball team to three co-district championships during her tenure at Medina High.
Head Coach Shari Bryan commented, ” Courtney’s athleticism will allow her to cover the court very well. We are excited to see her contributions both on and off the court.”
Gillaspy is the daughter of Brian and Marcie Gillaspy. She plans to major in either Business Administration or Sports and Recreation Leadership.
The Barclay College Bears women’s volleyball team will not only be welcoming in new players for the 2012 season, but also a new head coach. Last year’s assistant coach, Shari Bryan, will be taking on the head coaching duties next season and will be assisted by former Barclay College volleyball player, Traci Ballard.
When asked about her goals as a first year head coach she said, “As I enter my first year as head coach, I plan to build upon what Justin Kendall has established and continue to bring the BC volleyball program to new levels. Last season we finished 6-6 in conference play, I intend for our team to be seeded higher in post-season play and competing for the conference championship. I am excited to help each individual player set goals for this season on a personal level as well as for the volleyball team. Walking through the process of accomplishing these goals with them is an awesome opportunity in which I am blessed to be a part of. Lord willing, together we will accomplish many things!”
Shari also commented on the girls she has returning, saying that she is looking forward to the leadership qualities they will bring as upper classmen and the experience that comes with their time playing at Barclay as well. As of now, “it looks like we will have three new players next season to join us. They will be a welcome help in the back row. I am anxious to meet them all and have they become Barclay Bears!”
All in all Coach Bryan is excited to start a new season with old and new faces on the court. “I am looking forward most of all to being a part of these ladies lives. If it were just about volleyball and the games we win, it would be a waste of time. I want to use volleyball as a way to help them grow spiritually. My prayer is that I will model Christ-like behavior on and off the court. Developing relationships and walking through the season together, I pray, will prepare them for life after volleyball and Barclay College. A life that is willing to follow Christ’s calling”.
The Lady Bears Volleyball team had an exciting month of October that included 9 matches, four of which were against conference opponents. The Bears went 4-5 during the month to finish the regular season with an overall record of 16-11 (7-5 in conference).
The month started out against a very tough Manhattan Christian College at the Haviland High School gym. Despite losing the first two sets, the Lady Bears came back strong to take the 3rd before losing the 4th set and the match.
Next the Bears traveled to Springfield, MO to take on Central Bible College and Cottey College in a triangular. The Bears came away 1-1, beating CBC in four sets and falling to Cottey in three.
The following week BC traveled to McPherson, KS to face NAIA opponent Central Christian College in a doubleheader. Both matches went to five sets and play lasted nearly five hours with the Lady Bears taking the first match and losing the second.
Later that week the Bears faced MCC Conference opponent Calvary Bible College at home in a critical matchup that would determine conference standings and ACCA National Tournament rankings. The Lady Bears came out strong and defeated Calvary in 4 sets.
An undefeated Ozark Christian College team was next on the schedule and despite some very good play, the Lady Bears fell in straight sets at home.
The next match found the Bears traveling to Bethany, OK to take on another NAIA team in Southwestern Christian University. It was a hard-fought battle but the Lady Bears fell in five sets for the second time this season to SCU.
The final regular season game was a home rematch of last season’ s ACCA National Championship game against Nebraska Christian College. The Lady Bears played strong in their last appearance at Hockett this season, defeating NCC in straight sets. “I am very proud of the ladies and how they have played this season. We have had some injuries in the late part of the season that required other players to step up and fill some holes and they did a great job of it. I think we have great momentum as we prepare for the ACCA National Tournament in November,” said Head Coach Justin Kendall. The Lady Bears finish their season at the ACCA National Tournament in Kansas City, MO on Nov. 4-6 at the campus of Calvary Bible College.