SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – The Evangel volleyball team came up just short Thursday night in the season opener, 3-0, against 4th-ranked Viterbo (Wisc.) on the first day of the Evangel Tipoff Classic.
The Crusaders battled the V-Hawks in all three sets, however, the national power managed to stay just one step ahead. Viterbo snuck out with a 25-23, 25-22, 25-18 straight-set victory in the first match of the season for both teams.
Senior Heather Gahm and freshman Kara Finkbiner led Evangel offensively as Finkbiner tallied eight kills in her first collegiate match. Gahm added seven kills and three blocks as the Crusader defense helped keep each of the three sets close.
Emma Lander added eight blocks individually to pace the Crusaders.
Both teams struggled offensively as Viterbo finished with 25 errors and Evangel added 18 errors. However, it was the V-Hawks that edged Evangel with a .185 hitting percentage in the match to hold on to the win.
Evangel continues tough action against No. 3 Missouri Baptist and No. 11 Midland (Neb.) on Friday.
For the latest information on Evangel Athletics, follow the Crusaders on Facebook at Facebook.com/EvangelAthletics or go to www.EvangelAthletics.com. Fans can also receive updates on the team by downloading the Go Evangel Front Row App at EvangelAthletics.com/FrontRow available on Google Play and in the App Store.