Bears fall to Tigers in five sets

GEORGETOWN, Ky. — For the fourth time in its first five contests, the Shawnee State volleyball program engaged in a tough five-game battle with its competition, taking Georgetown to its third five-set affair of the season and its second between the two volleyball programs in less than a month’s time.

Once more, it was the Tigers taking home the five-set win — a 3-2 decision (25-18, 20-25, 25-23, 17-25, 15-9) Thursday evening at Davis-Reid Alumni Gymnasium in Georgetown, Ky.

Rhoads continues double-double roll

Despite Thursday’s setback, Macie Rhoads continued to put together an effort that has fitted the ones that she has put together all season.

The 2019 First-Team All-MSC honoree, who is well on her way to repeating from an All-MSC standpoint, was a reliable force through all five games that the Bears took part in — and faired especially well in the second game, posting four consecutive kills in a row for Shawnee State at one point. This tear helped the Bears go on a 10-4 spurt that allowed SSU to even the match up at one apiece with a 25-20 second-set victory that saw Rhoads notch six spikes in the five-point win.

In the third set, Rhoads added in three of her four kills in the frame, helping Shawnee State overcome a 11-10 deficit and build up a 20-15 advantage. However, Shawnee State gave up a 10-3 run in the third set to allow Georgetown to take a 25-23 third set win.

Rhoads, who finished with 17 kills and 18 digs to collect her fifth double-double in as many games, now has 859 kills and 751 digs for her career. The junior from Circleville, Ohio moved to within 35 kills of the program’s top-10 all-time in career kills. In addition to sitting 11th in that category, Rhoads is 17th in program history in career digs.

For the 2020-21 season, Rhoads has 88 kills and 93 digs already in just five games. The 5-9 outside hitter leads the Bears in both categories.

Kolinoff keeps own double-double streak going

Along with Rhoads, senior setter/defensive specialist Maria Kolinoff posted her fourth double-double in five contests with her own balanced play Thursday evening.

Kolinoff, who finished with a team-best 21 assists on the evening, posted five dimes apiece in the first, second and fourth sets. She had four assists, alone, following an 8-7 Georgetown lead that Shawnee State ultimately flipped the script on in the fourth frame of play.

Following her team-best 21 assists, the senior from Canal Fulton, Ohio notched 13 digs to complete her fourth double-double effort of the year all while not recording a single reception error despite handling several areas of the court as per usual.

Cochran continues upward trend

Continuing to build off of her strong early season start, Madison Cochran posted her fourth double-digit dig effort in a row while leading Shawnee State with a 21-dig performance Thursday evening.

The sophomore from Ontario, Ohio followed a career-high 22-dig performance against Campbellsville with her 21 digs, all while posting three service aces without a single serving error. Her fourth double-digit dig performance of the season already equals her total amount of games with 10 or more digs throughout the entirety of the 2019-20 campaign.

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Along with the previously mentioned trio, Maddie Payne posted a 16-assist, nine-dig performance while Alexis Palazzo (eight kills, two solo blocks), Bethany Colling (seven kills, two solo blocks) and Alexa Ball (four service aces) were among the Bears’ statistical leaders.

Shawnee State (1-5, 0-1 MSC) will return home to play Campbellsville (6-2, 1-0 MSC) Saturday afternoon in its home opener. The Mid-South Conference tilt is scheduled for 2 p.m. at Waller Gymnasium.

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