RUSSELLVILLE, Ark. - For the first two sets very little went Southeastern’s way as Arkansas Tech cruised to a 2-0 lead on its home floor, but the Savage Storm did not throw in the towel and instead mounted an epic comeback, winning the final three sets and knocking off the Golden Suns 3-2 on Friday night in Russellville, Ark.
The win is the first for the Savage Storm in Russellville and just the second over ATU and lifts SE to 7-6 overall and more importantly 2-2 in Great American Conference play. ATU slips to 9-5 overall and 3-2 in league play.
Southeastern will be back on the court at 2 p.m. on Saturday afternoon when it makes the short hop to Searcy, Ark., to take on the league’s top ranked team Harding.
SE’s comeback came on the backs of Emily Gentle and Megan Kunkel who turned in double-digit kill outings. Gentle turned in a match-best 16 kills, while Kunkel added 13.
Madelynne Cera dished out 23 assists in the match, but also chipped in with seven kills, seven digs and a total of 5 blocks.
Gentle turned in a double-double with a team-high 18 digs, while Taylor Benner added 15 and Kunkel finished her double-double with 10.
At the net the Storm defense racked up 13 team blocks led by nine from Ariel Sanders that included three solo blocks.
Little went SE’s way in the early going en route to a pair of blowout set loses of 25-16 and 25-13.
The Storm found itself in a 9-3 hole early in the third set, but chipped away at the deficit and closed to 16-14 when they used a 7-0 run to mount a 21-16 lead and rounded out the set win at 25-22.
SE jumped out to a 10-7 lead in the fourth set and would lead by as many as four. ATU would close to within a point on two occasions, but the Storm would hold on for the 25-21 win to even the match at 2-2.
SE scored first in the deciding set, but the Golden Suns would take a 4-2 lead and hold the advantage for much of the set, leading by as many as three at 10-7 before the Storm chipped away to a 12-12 tie in the set to 15. Southeastern would then score three of the final four points to finish off the comeback upset victory at 15-13 in the set and 3-2 in the match.