Bathelt Keeps Everyone Involved as Mountain Lions Sweep Chadron State
It's little wonder why Cindy Bathelt is a geography major. She really knows where things belong.
Thanks to the sophomore setter's evenhanded distribution, five University of Colorado at Colorado Springs players had between five and eight kills as the Mountain Lions swept the Chadron Sate Eagles 3-0 (25-18, 25-23, 25-18) Saturday evening at the Lions' Den.
"That's what we want; we want even distribution," said UCCS coach Keith Barnett. "We want our opponents to question where we're going and be able to get production out of every spot."
Bathelt kept the Eagles questioning enough to get Sonja Johnson (eight kills), Laura Brodie (eight), Andrea Brodie (seven), Jenica Shippy (seven) and Nicole Pederson (five) all involved in the offense. Bathelt added three kills herself, leading the Mountain Lions (8-6, 3-3 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference) to an efficient .271 hitting percentage.
"It's important to get everyone involved," said Bathelt, who finished with 28 assists.. "It's pretty predictable if you just set one person but if you keep changing it up, the block on the other side starts to second guess and you start getting one-on-ones and one-on-nones."
Lauren Yoder led Chadron State (1-12, 1-5 RMAC) with 12 kills despite playing only in the second and third sets. Mallory Irvine added nine kills for the Eagles while Sarah Mortensen had 16 digs.
The UCCS defense, led by Kendall Utz's 15 digs, frustrated Chadron State by keeping shot after shot in play and waiting for Eagle hitters to make mistakes. The Mountain Lions succeeded in forcing 25 of those errors, holding Chadron State to a .121 hitting mark.
That hitting percentage was at its lowest in the first set at -.088. Making that mark even more eye-opening was that Irvine had five kills without an error on eight attempts. That means that the rest of the Eagles logged a dismal -.308 mark.
"We were just trying to play our game," said Bathelt. "We played really well (Friday against Colorado Mines) and we wanted to keep that intensity."
The intensity wavered a bit in the second set Saturday as Yoder entered the match and helped the Eagles keep it close with six kills. UCCS trailed 13-11 when Bathelt and Shippy had kills to spark a 4-0 run. Chadron answered with a five-point run as Irvine had an ace and another scorching serve that resulted in an overpass that Mollie Jones hammered for another point. The set was tied at 22 when Andrea Brodie and Shippy scored kills to help seal the 25-23 decision.
"I think we got away from (the intensity) a little bit (in the second set) but we got it back and were able to close it out," said Bathelt.
The Mountain Lions opened a 10-2 lead in the third set behind three Laura Brodie kills. The Eagles managed to cut the deficit to three at 18-15, but two Pederson kills helped spark a 5-1 run that put the set, and the match, out of reach.
"I was glad to see the team step forward and put the game away," said Barnett.
Including Friday's 3-1 win over Mines. the Mountain Lions are now 4-1 in three-set matches and 4-0 in four-set matches. They are also 5-1 at home.
UCCS, which has played eight of its past 10 matches away from Colorado Springs, will hit the road again to face Mesa State on Oct. 2 and Fort Lewis on Oct. 3.
UCCS Players/Staff Featured
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