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RECAP | Volleyball Drops Hard-Fought Battle with Earlham in Regular Season Finale

Grace Laker (9). Photo: Angie Palmer
Grace Laker (9). Photo: Angie Palmer

FRANKLIN, Ind. – Playing in front of their home fans for the final time in 2019, the Franklin volleyball team welcomed the Earlham Quakers to the Spurlock Center for Senior Day.

The Grizzlies (15-15, 3-6 HCAC) and Quakers (18-8, 6-3 HCAC) engaged in a slugfest that featured numerous tied and lead changes throughout. In the end, the Quakers came away with a win in four sets, squeaking out narrow victories in the final two games to win 25-17, 22-25, 26-24, 25-23.

Game one was dictated by an early 8-0 Quaker rally that turned a 3-1 deficit into a 9-3 Earlham lead. Franklin scratched and clawed back to within a pair at 15-13, but the Quakers ripped off another long rally to pull away in the opening game. Earlham attackers hit .278 in the opening set while Franklin was held to .047 from the floor.

The second set saw the teams reverse roles with Franklin racking up 18 kills on the attack while holding the Quakers to a .135 hitting percentage to even the game up at a set each. Down 22-19, the Grizzlies rattled off six straight points to close out the set, getting kills from Kyndall Boyll, Grace Laker and Jenna Spini on route to the comeback win.

Game three saw the Grizzlies take a lead late into the set before the Quakers staged a comeback by taking six of the last seven points to steal a victory. Facing game point late in the fourth set, the Grizzlies held off defeat by taking two points to close the gap to 24-23 before Earlham ended the comeback bid.

Four Grizzlies hit double-digit kill totals with Grace Laker and Abby Sewell putting away 15 each, setting a career-high for Laker. Boyll finished with 13 kills and a career-high 21 digs while Spini notched 10 in her final career home match. Billie Jarrett handed out a team-high 27 assists, followed by Mackenzie Waldran who had her first 20-20 game with 25 assists and a career-high 21 digs.