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Fri, Sep. 1, 2017 - [Volleyball]

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Mid-America Christian University volleyball team entered Friday evening's match knowing that the result on the court was secondary to the cause off of it as the Southwestern Christian University Eagles came across the city to take part in Hurricane Harvey Relief night at the Gaulke Activity Center on MACU's South Oklahoma City campus. Still, the Lady Evangels wanted to get a result which would get them back on track early in the season, but on a night that saw them battle back repeatedly, they fell just short in the end.

MACU (1-4) erased a large deficit in the first set, and another in the decisive fifth set against Southwestern Christian (6-1), but in the End, SCU took the final three points of the night to claim a 3-2 win 19-25, 25-18, 25-16, 20-25, 15-12 before a good-sized crowd at the Gaulke.

The Lady Evangels trailed 18-13 late in the first set, but freshman Ryann Hale and senior Laurel Church combined to lead the Lady Evangels on a 12-1 run to close the frame. Church had five kills and an ace in the 13-point stretch as MACU took a 1-0 lead in the match. The second and third sets did not go MACU's way, as the Lady Evangels dropped both 25-18 and 25-16, respectively, but in the fourth frame, MACU came out strong.

The Lady Evangels opened the fourth stanza by scoring nine of the first 13 points, and after claiming a 4-3 lead early in the frame, they never trailed again in the set. SCU tried to rally late in the frame, but each time the Eagles got close, MACU made a play to keep them at bay, winning the set 25-20 and forcing a decisive fifth set.

SCU opened a quick 4-1 lead in the fifth frame, but MACU battled back to tie the score at 8-8, and the Lady Evangels took a brief lead at 10-9. After SCU reclaimed a 12-10 lead, Da'Jah Thompson and Church recorded successive kills to tie the score at 12 apiece, but that was all MACU had left in the tank. Three straight kills from SCU – including two from sophomore Cashlyn Munroe who finished the night with a match-high 23 kills – ended the evening on the court with a 15-12 fifth set win that gave SCU the 3-2 win in the match.

Church notched her second double-double of the season, pounding 16 kills and pulling up 18 digs in the match. Thompson also reached double figures in kills with 11, Melissa Hoppal had 30 assists, and Gabrielle Poling (24) and Adanna York (12) each had more than 10 digs. Mary Seifert led the MACU net defense, participating in six of the eight blocks MACU had as a team, and Dianne Walter was a participant in four blocks as well.

Off the court, the evening went very well, as the teams combined to raise just under $1,350 for relief efforts for those affected by Hurricane Harvey. The money will be sent to Parkgate Community Church in Pasadena, Texas, where the worship minister, Kenneth Spiller, is a MACU alum.

MACU will not play again until September 8, when they open Sooner Athletic Conference action with a road match at Wayland Baptist University (6-2). First serve is slated for 7 p.m.