Spartan Volleyball Rallies but Falls Short to Heidelberg

(L-R): Lauren Gurd and Kenya Moyers
(L-R): Lauren Gurd and Kenya Moyers

CLEVELAND – Despite forcing a fifth set and staging off match point twice, the Case Western Reserve University volleyball team fell by a score of 3-2 to visiting Heidelberg University on Tuesday evening at Horsburgh Gymnasium.

The Spartans (7-6) had won three in a row prior to tonight and will look to start a new streak this weekend at the CMU DoubleTree Tournament in Pittsburgh. The win snapped an eight-match losing skid for the Student Princes (3-8).

Heidelberg dropped the first set 25-19 before claiming the next two by scores of 25-15 and 25-23. The Spartans came back to win the fourth (25-23) despite trailing late in the set and fought off match point twice in the fifth before the Student Princes closed it out, 17-15.

Three Spartan attackers finished in double figures led by freshman Kenya Moyers (Garfield Heights, Ohio/Garfield Heights) with a season-high 15 kills. Sophomore middle hitter Haley Kauffman (Hartville, Ohio/Lake) and junior middle hitter Natalie Southard (Buffalo, N.Y./City Honors School) added 14 and 13, respectively. Freshman setter Lauren Gurd (Farmington Hills, Mich./Detroit Country Day) had her most productive match of the season with 65 assists – one of the highest totals in program history.

Defensively, four Spartans posted double-digits in digs, including sophomore libero Katie Best (Sewickley, Pa./North Allegheny) with 26. Gurd contributed 12 for her fifth double-double of the season.

Heidelberg was led by Amber Welfle with 21 kills and Jubilee Haase with 26 digs.

The Spartans open their weekend in Pittsburgh with Friday, September 20 matches versus John Carroll University at 4:00 p.m. and Farmingdale State University (N.Y.) at 8:00 p.m.