Daytona Beach, Fla. - Sophomore setter Kelli Carneal (Fredericksburg, Va.) tallied 45 assists, 14 digs, seven kills and two service aces to lead the Stetson volleyball team (2-24) to a thrilling 25-19, 19-25, 21-25, 25-21, 21-19 five-set win at Volusia County rival Bethune-Cookman (7-26) Wednesday evening at Moore Gymnasium. Freshman outside hitter Kaley Melville (New Germany, Minn.) put up an 18-kill, 11-dig double-double for the Hatters, who swept the season series from B-CU 2-0 and ended a school record 21-match losing streak in the process.
The Hatters rallied from a 2-1 deficit in sets and a 10-5 disadvantage in the fourth set to extend the match to five; freshman middle blocker Ellen Hawks (Austin, Texas) served three aces during the rally that saw Stetson catch up and then go ahead for good in the fourth set at 12-11.
Stetson led the fifth set 5-1 before the Lady Wildcats battled back to tie it 8-8; the Hatters were ahead again 13-11 coming out of a B-CU timeout but could not put the home team away at that point either. The set went on far beyond the 15-point mark; Stetson evaded one B-CU match point before the Lady Wildcats denied the Hatters on four consecutive match point attempts of their own. Eventually Melville would slam back-to-back kills to give Stetson the long-awaited triumph.
Junior outside hitter Kaylee Ream (Venice, Fla.) and Hawks also reached double figures in kills for Stetson, knocking down 11 and 10 winners, respectively. Sophomore libero Monique Russell (Phoenix, Ariz.) led the defense with 19 digs, raising her season total to 424 and taking sole possession of second place on the Stetson all-time single-season record list in that categeory. She will need 31 digs in the season finale Saturday at FGCU to tie the record set by Cindy Benge in 1991. Sophomore right side Madison Anderson (La Canada, Calif.) had her strongest match of the season with nine digs, two kills and two assists.
Kaiyana Johnson led B-CU with 13 kills on .458 hitting; Jessica Wilson (14 digs, 10 kills) and Alexis Bliese (29 assists, 11 digs) had double-doubles for the Lady Wildcats. Jennifer Jimenez (16 digs) and Shanicka Reddick (15 digs) did strong defensive work for the home team as well with Kat Agson adding 10 kills.
Stetson will wrap up the 2010 season Saturday at 7:00 pm on the road at A-Sun rival Florida Gulf Coast. A-Sun.TV will broadcast the match from Alico Arena; a link to Live Stats is available at GoHatters.com. Be sure to follow the Hatters on Twitter at @StetsonSID (twitter.com/stetsonsid), "like" Stetson Athletics on Facebook and check out the official YouTube channel at youtube.com/stetsonhatters.