JACKSON, Miss. — If you are one who enjoys studying about the Civil War, you might compare it to Lee's volleyball road trip. The three-match series, over three consecutive days, carried the Lady Flames from Montgomery, Ala, down to the Port of New Orleans and finally back up to Jackson, Miss.
It was a tired and road weary Lee team that left Jackson on Saturday afternoon and began making the seven-hour journey back to Cleveland. The long bus ride was made much easier after coach Andrea Hudson's team defeated host Belhaven University 3-0 (25-14, 25-21, 21-18), completing the three-match sweep of the Southern States Athletic Conference West opponents.
Lee, ranked fifth in the latest NAIA poll, improved to 16-6 overall and 8-1 in SSAC play. It was their eighth straight victory and also ended a six-match winning steeak for the Blazers. Belhaven drops to 16-4 overall and 7-2 in league action.
Assistant coach Kevin Hudson was pleased with the showing of the Lady Flames over the past two matches. "Our girls stuck with the game plan and played well again, We are starting to play like we were playing earlier in the season."
Lee had three players with double-figure kills. Marija Zelenovic and Paula Martins knocked down 12 apiece while Irene Ojukwu added 10 and made it a double-double afternoon with 14 digs. Nicole Sumida followed closely with nine. Martins also had three blocks.
Camil Martinez dished off 38 assists and contributed three blocks. Libby Peigen was the match dig leader with 26 and served up three aces. Sarah Davis came in and picked up eight digs.
Lee drops Loyola
NEW ORLEANS — Round two of a three match SSAC road trip developed into an impressive 3-0 victory over host Loyola University on Friday evening. After fighting hard to claim the first two sets, 25-19, 26-24, the touring Lee volleyball coasted in the final set, 25-14.
“We played much better tonight,” said head coach Andrea Hudson. “Having Marija (Zelenovic) back and playing well helped us. We were pretty balanced across the board.”
Again strong and balanced play at the net keyed the victory for the fifth-ranked Lee club. It was the Lady Flames seventh straight win since a five-set loss to Spring Hill. Irene Ojukwu was the kill leader with 12. She also came away with eight digs. Paula Martins was her usual self, 11 kills (.556 attack markl) and Zelenovic added 10 kills.
Setter Camil Martinez produced a double-double, 35 assists, 10 digs and also added a pair of blocks. Freshman turned away several kill attempts by the Wolf Pack and had a sizzling eight blocks to go along with seven kills. Lauren Williams had four blocks and Libby Peigen came up with 18 digs as she kept several rallies alive.