EMPORIA — Ten days after defeating Emporia State inside Gross Memorial Coliseum, the Fort Hays State volleyball team bested the Hornets on their home court Tuesday, 3-1 (25-22, 17-25, 26-24, 25-22). The Tigers move to 6-7 overall and 3-2 in MIAA play with the win, while ESU dips to 4-9 on the year and 0-5 in league action.
The Tigers used a 9-2 run in the heart of the opening set to open up an 18-12 lead before the Hornets battled back to tie things up. Isabelle Reynolds broke up the Hornet rally with a kill before Morgan Christiansen tacked on another point for the Tigers. After ESU closed within 22-21, freshmen Christiansen and Delaney Humm tallied consecutive kills to give the Tigers a chance at set point. The Hornets fought off the first point before a setting error gave FHSU the 25-22 victory.
The teams traded points early in the second set before the Hornets extended a 17-8 lead thanks to an 8-1 run. Fort Hays State clawed back within four, 19-15, before ESU scored on six of the final eight rallies to level the match, 1-1.
After Emporia State slowly built a 17-13 lead in the third set, the Tigers responded by scoring six of the next eight points to level the frame at 19-19. The home team went on another run, stretching out a 23-20 lead before Fort Hays State scored four-straight to reach set point. The Hornets tied things up at 24 momentarily, but kills from Christiansen and Kylie Brown propelled the Tigers to a 26-24 win.
Emporia State once again started strong in the fourth set, scoring the first four points before leading by as many as six, 13-7. But a Hornet service error triggered a big run for the Tigers, who scored 13 of the next 14 points to build a commanding 20-14 lead. Two ESU errors and three kills from Delaney Humm helped the Tigers close within one before Humm and Tatum Bartels combined for a block to tie the set at 14-14.
Bartels gave FHSU its first lead of the frame with a kill before Katie Darnell was credited with a service ace on a rotation error. Morgan West joined the party with a kill to stretch the lead to 17-14 before Humm tacked on two more kills. Emporia State managed to close within one later in the set, 23-22, before back-to-back kills from Reynolds and Humm ended the match.
Emporia State outhit the Tigers on the day, .191-.170. Both sides were busy at the net on defense, with the Hornets totaling eight blocks and FHSU recording seven.
Humm led the Tigers with 17 kills on 48 swings (17-9-48) while adding 15 digs for her seventh double-double of the year. Reynolds and Christiansen added 11 kills each, with Christiansen leading the team with four blocks (one solo). Katie Darnell tossed up 38 assists, adding 13 digs and two service aces. Libero Abbie Hayes paced the Tigers with 16 digs.
The win gives the Tigers a winning conference record for the first time since the end of the 2016 season.
The Tigers will continue their road trip over the weekend when they head to Missouri for a pair of conference matches. First up is a Friday night meeting with 10th-ranked Northwest Missouri State in Maryville, Mo. First serve is set for 6 p.m.
FHSU women's golf ties for 12th
At Edmond, Okla., Fort Hays State Women's Golf finished in a tie for 12th place at the UCO Classic in Edmond, Okla. The Tigers sat in sixth after shooting 321 in the first round, but slipped to 12th after a 344 in the second round. The tournament took place at The Golf Club of Edmond, a par-71 layout.
Kira Mestl held the lead through 18 holes of the tournament, shooting a 73 (+2) on day one. It turned out to be the fifth-lowest round of the tournament after champion Susana Olivares of Central Oklahoma shot 68 on day two and three others shot 72. Unfortunately, Mestl slipped into a tie for 26th with an 86 on day two.
Taylor DeBoer improved three strokes on day two and finished at 161 strokes, carding rounds of 82 and 79. She tied for 35th two strokes back of Mestl. Kate Peterka had rounds of 82 and 85, tying for 55th. Madison Roether shot rounds of 84 and 94, tying for 78th. Riley Hunter also competed for FHSU, shooting rounds of 91 and 101.
Central Oklahoma rallied from two strokes down after day one to win its home tournament by seven strokes over Arkansas Tech. The Bronchos were the only team to shoot sub-300, posting a 295 on day two. Arkansas Tech remained consistent with 304 each day. Fort Hays State tied Arkansas-Monticello for 12th.
The Tigers close out the fall portion of their schedule next week at the Midwest Classic in Warrensburg, Mo. (Oct. 7-8), hosted by Central Missouri.
FHSU men's soccer ranked No. 21
Fort Hays State moved up one spot in the latest United Soccer Coaches Top 25 Poll, checking in at No. 21 on Tuesday (Oct. 1). The Tigers are now 4-3-1 overall on the season, but undefeated in GAC play so far at 3-0-1.
Fort Hays State is coming off a 1-0-1 performance on the road last week. The Tigers tied Ouachita Baptist 2-2 and then handed Harding its first loss in GAC play with an 8-1 blowout win.
Fort Hays State is the only GAC team represented in the Top 25, while Northeastern State and Rogers State are just outside looking in among the teams receiving votes. FHSU defeated Northeastern State and Rogers State earlier this season. Two of Fort Hays State's losses on the year are to Top 25 teams (No. 3 Maryville and No. 23 Eastern New Mexico).
Fort Hays State plays just one match this week, taking on Newman University at home on Saturday (Oct. 5).
Agudelo earns another conference honor
Fort Hays State senior forward Santiago Agudelo earned GAC Men's Soccer Offensive Player of the Week honors for a second straight week, released on Tuesday (Oct. 1). He tallied seven points for the past week, helping FHSU to a 1-0-1 record against GAC competition on the road.
Agudelo scored three goals and added an assist over a two-game span for Fort Hays State. He had the go-ahead goal to put FHSU up 2-1 in what eventually was a 2-2 tie at Ouachita Baptist. Two days later, he helped the Tigers move into first place alone in the GAC standings with an 8-1 win over Harding, scoring two goals and adding an assist.
Agudelo joins Northeastern State's Ben Watson (Defensive Player of the Week) and Justin Hinman (Goalkeeper of the Week) as the conference's weekly honorees in men's soccer.