The Belles faced a tough opponent Saturday and were ultimately dominated by undefeated Calvin. The Knights (18-0, 10-0 MIAA) topped Saint Mary's (6-9, 4-6) on three straight sets by scores of 25-18, 25-15, and 25-13.
The Belles put up a good fight, starting on a strong note in the first set by hitting .452 with 14 kills and no errors, before the Knights eventually won.
They also managed to trade points and maintain ties in the second set before Calvin broke a 14-14 tie and went on a run that led to a victory.
The Knights put the Belles away early during the third set, as they jumped ahead by seven points and never looked back en route to their greatest margin of victory during the match.
Despite the resounding win and convincing numbers, Calvin coach Amber Warners felt that the statistics were not indicative of the high level of intensity and competition the match featured.
"The score did not depict how the match went. St. Mary's is a very scrappy team that plays with discipline," Warners said.
Freshman outside hitter Kati Schneider led Saint Mary's with 12 kills, while junior outside hitter Stephanie Bodien chipped in with 10 kills and a .357 hitting average. Junior setter Danie Brink contributed assists to 26 of the Belles' kills, and freshman setter and defensive specialist Annie Bodien had a team-high nine digs.
Any success the Belles have enjoyed this season, whether in a win or loss, is due in no small part to the play of their freshmen. Freshman outside hitter Meredith Mersits, freshman setter Emily Getz, Schneider and Bodien played in all three sets.
Saint Mary's next takes the court Wednesday when the team hosts Olivet. The annual Dig for the Cure match tips off at 7 p.m.