They might have gotten the answer after scoring a heart-pounding 3-2 victory over eighth-ranked Indiana Wesleyan in the final match of the Boneyard Brawl on Saturday afternoon.
Time and again the Lady Flames had their backs to the wall against an Indiana Wesleyan team that had suffered only one defeat before Saturday's meeting. In the fourth set, Lee was down to a final point but came back to win 27-25. The fifth set turned out to be one that very few will ever forget. The two volleyball powerhouses went back and forth in the short set before Lee finally prevailed 20-18.
IWU claimed the first set 25-19 but the Lady Flames fought back and won set two 26-24. The tension continued to build as the Indiana club claimed set three, 25-23 and forced the late heroics by the determined Lee club.
There was outstanding play up and down the lineup for the ladies of coach Andrea Hudson. Marija Zelenovic had 18 big kills, eight digs and four blocks to pace the blistering Lee attack. Irene Ojukwu turned in what has turned out to be her usual daily-double total. She finished with 14 kills and 13 digs. Paula Martins hit over .409 again and tallied 12 kills and three blocks. Nicole Sumida added 11 kills and was the block leader with five.
Lauren Williams rounded out the double-figure kills by banging home 10 slams and coming up with four blocks. Camil Martinez had 47 assists and Courtney Wilson countered with 14. Libby Peigen rounded out the big day with 25 digs.
"It was an intense battle, just great to watch," said assistant coach Kevin Hudson after his Lady Flames improved to 22-9 on the year and finished at 2-2 in the Georgetown event. Indiana Wesleyan suffered its only defeat in the four matches and dropped to 31-2 on the year.
Lee 3, Taylor 2
After dropping a pair of matches on Friday and down by two sets on Saturday morning, things did not look good for Lee's volleyball team in the Boneyard Brawl being hosted by Georgetown College.
Paced by another outstanding effort by Paula Martins, the Lady Flames came battling back to win three straight sets and claim the 3-2 (23-25, 23-25, 25-18, 25-22, 15-9) win over Taylor University (Ind.).
Martin finished with 20 kills, four digs and a .447 hitting percentage. Irene Ojukwu tallied a double-double, 15 kills and 15 digs, while Marija Zelenovic also had 15 kills and a .406 attack mark. Camil Martinez dished off 49 assists and Libby Peigen came up with 31 big digs.
"We're just not playing very well," said coach Kevin Hudson. "We just got to keep working to find out what will help us get better as a team, but we'll just glad to get this win."
The Lady Flames found the going tough in the opening rounds Friday.
Lee opened the day with a 3-2 loss to Point Park (Pa.) and later in the evening, were dealt a 3-1 defeat at the hands of host Georgetown College.
Georgetown 3, Lee 1
The Lady Flames captured the first set 25-20 and then watched as the Tigers rallied back to claim the next three sets 21-25, 18-25, 18-25.
Irene Ojukwu had a double-double in the loss, 13 kills, 12 digs and three blocks. Paula Martins bounced back with 11 kills and .409 attack percentage. Camil Martinez continued her fine play with her second straight double-double. She recorded 39 assists, 12 digs and chipped in with seven kills. Lee got 21 digs from Libby Peigen and 11 digs from Sarah Davis.
Georgetown countered with 15 kills by Caraline Moher. Lindsey Martindale sparked her club with 16 digs and 21 assists. Stephanie Gurren added 18 assists as the 11th-ranked Tigers improved to 27-3 on the year. Lee dropped to 20-10 on the year.
Earlier in the day, Georgetown had a 21-match winning streak snapped when it lost to Indiana Tech in five sets.
Point Park 3, Lee 2
In a volleyball match that had more turns and mountains to climb than an Eastern Kentucky highway, Lee's fifth-ranked Lady Flames went down in five sets to Point Park (Pa.) on Friday afternoon in the Georgetown College Boneyard Brawl.
Point Park (24-6) jumped out to a quick lead by winning the first two sets, 25-23, 25-22. The Lady Flames rallied back to even the hard-fought match with convincing 25-23 and 25-15 decisions, but the Pennsylvania club turned the match completely around with a 15-2 short-set rally.
The Lady Flames got a sparkling effort from freshman Nicole Sumida. She finished with 16 kills and a .500 attack mark. Irene Ojukwu added 17 kills and eight digs while Camil Martinez produced another double-double with 48 assists and 11 digs. Paula Martins joined in with 11 kills and four blocks.
Libby Peigen came away with 25 digs and a pair of aces. Sarah Davis had 10 digs and two aces. Lauren Williams totaled five kills and three blocks.
Point Park was paced by Lindsey Oberacker who carded 16 kills, 12 digs and three blocks. Tayler Puqliese helped the winning effort with 38 assists.