HANOVER, Ind. – Hanover improved to 17-10 overall and 6-2 in HCAC play as the Panthers took down the Manchester Spartans in straight sets (25-20, 27-25, 25-23) on Friday night.
The Panthers amassed 30 kills on the night on their way to their 10th straight sets victory of the year including three in their previous four games.
Amber Miller (Louisville, Ky.) set the tone right out of the gate with an Ace on the first serve of the game. Set one was tightly contested until, ahead 16-15, The Red and Blue won seven of the next eight points to break the set wide open. The Panthers won the first set 25-20 thanks in part to only five errors as compared to nine errors by the Spartans.
Set two was close the whole way through with neither team leading by more than three points the entire set. Kelsey Ketcham (Mishawaka, Ind.) made big play after big play to help power the Panthers to a 27-25 set two victory. Not only did Ketcham lead the Panthers with seven assists in the set, but she also added three kills and three digs including two kills in the Panthers final five points. The dagger in set two was delivered by Carlie Burson (Corydon, Ind.) and Josie McClara (Jamestown, Ind.) whose block assist scored the final point to give the Panthers the set two victory.
The final set saw the Panthers start sluggish as Manchester raced out to an 8-1 lead. A kill by Emma Rolf (Lebanon, Ind.) and two straight kills by Maura Dankoski (Fishers, Ind.) sparked the Panthers set three comeback with the Red and Blue tying the set at 13-13. Late in the set with Hanover leading 22-20, the Panthers scored two huge back to back points. The first came on a block assist by McClara and Adrianne Vance, the second on a block assist by McClara and Ketcham. An attack error by Manchester gave the Panthers a 25-23 set three win and the victory.
Leaders for the Panthers tonight were Burson who finished the game with eight kills, Ketcham finished with 21 assists, Ally Williams (Fountaintown, Ind.) led the way with 11 digs, McClara added six blocks, and Ketcham led the Panthers with a hitting percentage of 0.444.
Hanover concludes their regular season in a showdown with Anderson University during Senior Day tomorrow November 2nd. The Panthers will honor their seniors before the match which is slated to begin at 2 P.M. in Collier Arena.