Nathan Looney, Assistant Sports Information Director
HOT SPRINGS – The sixth seed Harding volleyball team defeated the third seed Southwestern Oklahoma 3-1 (25-27, 25-23, 31-29, 27-25) Thursday in the opening round of the Great American Conference Tournament at Bank OZK Arena.
Harding advances to the semifinals were it will face No. 2 seed Northwestern Oklahoma at 3:30 p.m., Friday.
Harding improves to 20-10 overall. It was the 27th time and the fourth straight the Lady Bisons have won 20 or more matches in a season.
Southwestern Oklahoma ends its season with a 16-12 record.
With the first set tied at six, Harding won the next four points on two kills to lead 10-6. Southwestern Oklahoma bounced back to pull within one, 10-9. Harding then went on an 8-4 run to lead 18-13. Trailing 23-19, the Bulldogs won three straight points to pull within one, 23-22. Harding had two set points but Southwestern Oklahoma won the set 27-25. The Lady Bisons had 19 kills in the set.
Harding jumped out to a 10-1 lead in the second set on three kills and three blocks. Trailing 19-9, Southwestern Oklahoma went on a 12-3 run to pull within one, 22-21. The Lady Bisons won three of the next five points to win the set 25-23.
Trailing 14-12 in the third set, Harding went on a 4-0 run on two kills to lead 16-14. The Lady Bisons held on to its lead until Southwestern Oklahoma took a 23-22 lead. Harding had five set points and finally won when it closed on the set on a 3-0 run on three straight kills to win 31-29. The Lady Bisons had 22 kills in the set.
Southwestern Oklahoma took a 9-4 lead in the fourth set as Harding had five attack errors. The Lady Bisons went on a 13-7 run to lead 17-16. Trailing 24-23, Harding went on a 4-1 run on three kills to win the set 27-25.
– Logan Smith captured a double-double for Harding with 19 kills and 21 digs.
– Libby Hinton had 16 kills, hit .353 and had six blocks.
– Kelli McKinnon had 14 kills and Ally Stoner had 10 kills.
– Sarah Morehead had a season-high 57 assists and had 17 digs.
– Hardin had 114 digs led by Emma Winiger who had 22. Katherine Cowart had 21 digs and Kinley
Schnell had 15.
– Harding had five service aces.
– Harding had 69 kills, 30 attack errors and hit .179.
– Morgan Maicee led Southwestern Oklahoma with 19 kills.
– Emily Wood had 15 kills and 28 digs.
– Kaitlyn Dillon had 30 digs to lead the defense.