Doane College rallied to win the final two sets, including a 15-13 win in the fifth set to hold off Nebraska Wesleyan, 3-2, in the home opener for the Prairie Wolves on Tuesday night (Sept. 30) in front of an energetic crowd at Snyder Arena.
Doane (16-4, 3-1 GPAC) won the first set with a score of 25-15, but NWU (8-3, 2-1) answered right back to take control of the match. The Prairie Wolves took game two, 25-19, behind Cara Ward's seven kills, then dominated game three, 25-16, pounding out 19 kills and just three errors.
The Tigers came roaring back in the fourth set to win easily, 25-10, to force a deciding fifth set.
Doane led for the majority of the fifth set, including a 14-10 lead, but NWU rallied to pull within one point on back-to-back kills by Abby Bade. However, Doane's Chelsee Marvin hit home the match-winning kill to end the set at 15-13.
Three NWU players reached double digits in kills led by Ward with 17. Bade and Brittny Barber each had 10 kills. Freshman Ashley Jedlicka came off the bench in the second set to lead NWU with 35 assists. Erika Goldsmith led the NWU defense with 41 digs.
The Tigers, who have now defeated NWU 13 straight matches, were led by Chelsee Marvin who had 22 kills and a .391 hitting percentage. Terra Andreasen was the only other Tiger to reach double figures in kills with 16.
The Prairie Wolves will now hit the road to face three straight teams ranked in the NAIA Top 25. NWU takes on Dordt College on Friday night and Morningside College on Saturday afternoon.