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October 28, 2011

Volleyball downs Susquehanna, Berry in BSC Fall Invitational

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—The Birmingham-Southern volleyball team defeated both Susquehanna University and Berry College, Saturday in the BSC Fall Invitational.

The Panthers move to 18-16 with the two wins, and have now won six straight matches.

BSC defeated Susquehanna in three sets by the scores of 25-21, 25-13, and 25-23. Junior Shelby Moore led all players with 17 kills and hit .419, while sophomore Alex Bothe posted a double-double with 14 kills and 11 digs. Junior setter Lauren Reibe also had a double-double with 40 assists and 10 digs, and junior libero Presley Dickson led with 15 digs. Senior Hope Harris also reached double digits with 11 digs. Senior Alaina Smith led at the net with three blocks.

Against Berry this evening, the Panthers hosted their inaugural "Panther Pink" night, teaming up with Dig Pink, a national intiative to raise breast cancer awareness. BSC won the hard-fought match against the Vikings in four sets, winning set one 25-22, but falling in set two, 25-23. The Panthers rallied in set three, winning 25-21, and set four, 25-19.

Bothe led with 14 kills and also had 12 digs, followed by freshman Kelly Foster with 12 kills and Moore with 11. Dickson led with 26 digs and Reibe led with 39 assists. Harris recorded 19 digs and junior Chelsea Pittman had 15. Smith led again with five blocks and also had seven kills with no errors, hitting .467.

"I thought we played really hard today to earn both wins," Head Coach Judy Green said. "It was exactly what we needed because we need to remember how hard we have to play to be successful. We are a blue-collar team with a blue-collar work ethic, and that is what has gotten us to where we are, and that's what's going to take us even further.

"I'm very proud of our team's effort today, very proud, because it wasn't easy, and we stayed calm and found a way to be successful.

"In the last match, Alaina Smith played outstanding," Green continued. "That was one of the best matches I've seen her play all year long. She did a great job at the net blocking and channeling balls to the defense - she's just a scorer.

"It was also really fun tonight to be part of the Panther Pink initiative, just being part of a nationwide phenomena that helps raise awareness for something that affects so many people, both men and women."

BSC is back in action in the Invitational tomorrow, facing Fisk University at 2 p.m. and Spring Hill College at 7 p.m. Saturday will also be Senior Night for Smith, Harris, Alessandra Norman, and Chelsea Pittman.

In other matches today, Spring Hill defeated Susquehanna, 3-0, Berry defeated Fisk, 3-0, and Spring Hill defeated Fisk, 3-0. For complete results as well as box scores for all matches, visit the Invitational web page here.