Mountain Lions sweep No. 21 Colorado Mines
COLORADO SPRINGS - It's always a quandary; what to do to make senior night special?
A win over the No. 21-ranked team in the country does just fine.
As the University of Colorado Colorado Springs honored its graduating seniors, it was junior Nikki Kinzer that dominated with 16 kills and a .536 hitting mark to lead the Mountain Lions to a 3-0 (25-21, 25-20, 25-22) victory over the Colorado School of Mines Orediggers Tuesday evening at the Gallogly Events Center.
Kinzer had just one hitting error on 28 attempts in posting her seventh .500-plus hitting night of the season.
"It all began with our passing," said senior setter Cindy Bathelt. "Our passing was right on so I had every option. They were jumping with me and they were jumping with our outsides so Nikki was one-on-one a lot of times."
The seniors also showed up big on their big night. Bathelt had 33 assists and six kills. Also with six kills was Jenica Shippy, while Sonja Johnson and Alex Wood added five kills each. Johnson also had 15 digs, second only to Skylar Lewandowski's 16, and Wood had 14 digs.
UCCS enjoyed an outstanding service game that accounted for six aces but, more importantly, kept the potent Oredigger hitters from getting the number of quality looks they would have likes. Mines had 17 hitting errors to just 10 for UCCS.
"Coach has been working with us in practice to take risks on our serves and to serve tough," said Shippy. "We've been working on that all season and have been successful some times and other not."
They were most definitely successful Tuesday as the Mountain Lions improved to 14-11 overall and 8-7 in Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference play. Despite the record, UCCS has already been eliminated from postseason play.
Jacki Stabell led Mines (17-7, 11-4 RMAC) with 13 kills. Hannah Margheim had a match-high 19 digs.
With the first set tied at eight, UCCS put together an 8-2 run behind service aces by Bathelt and Lewandowski. The Orediggers couldn't get closer than four until late in the set, when a five-point rally closed the gap to 23-21. The Mountain Lions closed it out with Mines' ninth atteck error of the set and a kill by Kinzer.
Kinzer took over in the second set with six kills, while Johnson had seven digs. A four-point run gave UCCS some space, opening a 16-12 lead. Mines cut the lead to three but five consecutive side-outs by UCCS kept the Orediggers from closing the gap.
Kinzer was even more dominant in the final set with seven kills. Much like the second set, the third was tied at 12 when UCCS began to creep ahead by consistently getting side-outs. While the lead never grew larger than five, the Orediggers never got closer than two.
It was the third time this season that the Mountain Lions got ahead of a nationally-ranked team two sets to none, but the first that they were able to close the deal. West Texas A&M, Regis and Metro State all managed to come back after trailing UCCS 2-0.
UCCS Players/Staff Featured
|Additional News Stories|
|February 27, 2012||Cindy Bathelt to play professional volleyball in Rome||Cindy Bathelt will be playing in Rome next fall! The UCCS senior setter will be playing for Aprilia Volleyball Club from August 2012 through May 2013. Aprilia is currently a ‘Serie C’ team that is looking to regain its form and move up the ladder in the Italian rankings. The club is serious about this undertaking, as they’ve hired a trio of American players. Joining Cindy are an outside hitter from Wake Forest and a middle blocker from the University of Miami. They will be 20 minutes south of Rome and living together after a month each with a host family. Italian lessons are mandatory and Cindy is excited to, “have the opportunity to pursue the next chapter in (her) career in such an incredible place as Italy. The people are very outgoing, rich in culture, and the pizza is the best in the world!”|
|November 16, 2011||Kinzer named to Daktronics All-Central Region Team||University of Colorado Colorado Springs middle blocker Nikki Kinzer was named second-team Daktronics All-Central Region, it was announced Wednesday.|
|November 11, 2011||UCCS' Bathelt named to academic all-district team||Cindy Bathelt of the University of Colorado Colorado Springs was named to the 2011 Capital One Division II Academic All-District VII Volleyball Team, it was announced Thursday.|
|November 8, 2011||Kinzer, Bathelt named all-RMAC||COLORADO SPRINGS - Nikki Kinzer and Cindy Bathelt of the University of Colorado Colorado Springs were each named to the 2011 all-Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Team, the RMAC announced Tuesday.|
|November 5, 2011||UCCS concludes season with win over Chadron State||CHADRON, Neb. – Behind solid production from the team’s seniors, each of whom was likely playing in their final collegiate match, the University of Colorado Colorado Springs swept the Chadron State Eagles 3-0 (25-18, 25-15, 25-19).|