Dennis, Panthers continue recent form during road win at Earlham

Claire Dennis

RICHMOND, Ind. – Senior Claire Dennis (Bloomington, Ind.) continued her recent form and the Hanover volleyball team defeated Earlham on the road in four sets, 25-15, (23-25), 25-22, 25-20.

Dennis tallied a double-digit point total for the third straight match and the sixth time in the past seven outings, as she recorded a season-high 14 kills to go with seven total blocks. The senior also hit .480 for the match, her second highest clip this season.

The Panthers (12-11, 2-3 HCAC) also received eight kills, 13 assists and seven digs from freshman Kelsey Ketcham (Mishawaka, Ind.). A trio of Hanover players, juniors Carlie Burson (New Salisbury, Ind.) and Madie Snyder (Boonville, Ind.) and freshman Emma Rolf (Lebanon, Ind.) added five or more kills each as well. Rolf also pitched in seven digs, four blocks and two of HC's eight service aces.

Leading the defense was junior Ally Williams (Fountaintown, Ind.) with 21 digs. Sophomore Brynn Durecki (Winona Lake, Ind.) added 10 digs as well.

Senior Abby Crump (Indianapolis, Ind.) paced the Panthers with 17 assists. Crump was also efficient offensively with two kills on two attacks.

Hanover was able to overcome an early six-point deficit in the first set, thanks to a .500 hitting percentage in the frame. The Blue and Red would eventually pull away with a 25-15 decision.

Unlike the opening set, HC was unable to fully recover from an early second set run by the Quakers (16-11, 3-3 HCAC). Earlham used an 8-0 scoring spurt to go in front 18-11. The Panthers were able to pull within one point late, 23-22 an 24-23, but ultimately fell 25-23, tying the match at one set apiece.

Hanover's only deficit in set No. 3 was 1-0, as the Panthers were able to build a comfortable 17-9 advantage. A 7-0 run by EC though had the Quakers within one point, 17-16. A late 5-1 run put HC in front 24-20, and a kill from Dennis capped the frame at 25-22.

In what would be the final set of the evening, the Blue and Red scored the opening six points, which included five total kills and three from Dennis. A 9-2 spurt later in the set gave HC a double-digit advantage, 19-7. Another Earlham run though, had them within four points, 24-20, before a Snyder kill concluded the set, 25-20, and the match, 3-1.

The Panthers have now won three matches in a row and four of their last five outings overall. The current three-match winning streak is the second longest stretch of the fall for HC.

Hanover will look to continue its winning ways with a home contest against DePauw (Ind.) Thursday, Oct. 18. The Panthers and Tigers are set for a 7 p.m. start in the non-conference affair.

Contact: Tyler Jester