BGSU volleyball clinch MAC regular season title at home against Akron

Drew Terhall and Drew Terhall

Bowling Green volleyball defeats Akron in five sets. With the win, BGSU is now the 2021 MAC regular season champions. It is their third title in the last four years. 

“This is why we work hard all day in practice. We accomplished one of our goals,” sophomore Yelianiz Torres said. 

Even after winning the title, Head Coach Danijela Tomic is not looking to coast into the MAC tournament. 

“Champions don’t take breaks. We have another match against Akron tomorrow,” she said. 

The team now ties the program record for longest win streak at 17, tying the 2006 team. 

Akron got into the spirit of March, looking determined to play spoiler for the Falcons. It was not an easy match for BGSU. 

“This match shows the resiliency, the grit, the toughness, the character of this team,” Tomic said. 

The Falcons hit for 18.6% in the match. The Zips were close to that mark, hitting for 17.7%. 

BGSU led between the teams in kills with 56. It took every single kill to hold off the Zips. 

From start to finish, sophomore Petra Indrova had a fantastic game. She led the team in kills with 20. She had another double-double with 19 digs. 

Senior Jacqueline Askin and junior Katelyn Meyer also reached double digit kills. Askin finished with 10 and Meyer finished with 13. 

The team played with their setter, junior Hanna Laube. Freshman Jaden Walz got the start in her place, her first start this season. 

Walz put up a good performance, having a career high 44 assists in the match. 

The first set started with both teams trading runs. BGSU would be the first to strike with an 8-1 run to take the 10-5 lead. 

Akron responded with a run of their own to take a 12-11 lead. The Falcons took a timeout to regroup. 

BGSU came out of the timeout on fire. They took the lead and never let Akron back into the game. 

The Falcons held the Zips to a 3% hitting percentage and forced them into seven attacking errors. 

Indrova led the Falcons with five kills. Senior Katie Kidwell was not far behind her with four kills in the set. The offense was efficient, hitting for 25%. 

The Falcons won the set 25-17 and had momentum heading into the second set. 

Akron jumped out to a 7-3 lead in the second set to get some momentum of their own. The Falcons would call an early timeout. 

The Zips extended their lead to 13-7 before BGSU called another timeout. The Falcons did make a small run to make the game close. 

BGSU got within two points of Akron, 16-18. The Zips called a timeout to stop any momentum the Falcons were getting. 

Akron found some success against the Falcons’ defense. The Zips had 14 kills while holding the Falcons to nine kills. 

With the Falcons looking confused during the second set, the Zips took the set 25-19 to tie the match at one set a piece. 

Akron continued to frustrate the Falcons. The Zips were on point the whole third set. 

Despite only having 10 kills as a team in the set, Akron had six service aces. They also tallied four total blocks. 

BGSU played their worst set of the season. They hit for 2.9% and had lapses on defense. Akron was giving them their best play. 

Indrova was the only Falcon to have multiple kills in the set. The Zips were making the Falcons work for their points. 

Akron coasted to a 25-14 set win. They entered the fourth set on the verge of ending the Falcons’ perfect season. 

Tomic would not let her team give up while down in the match. 

“I always tell them after losing sets, let’s learn from it but then move on. We can’t live in the past,” Tomic said. 

BGSU still couldn’t find a rhythm at the beginning of the set. Both teams tried to make the push to take a big lead. 

They would play into the media timeout with BGSU up 15-13. From that point on, the Falcons finally got some momentum. 

BGSU hit for 37.1% and held Akron to 17.2%. Askin led the team with five kills. Indrova continued to have a great game, chipping in four kills. 

The serving game would be on BGSU’s side, with the Falcons getting four service aces from four different players. 

BGSU won the set 25-18 to force a fifth set. 

The fifth set was a close one. Both teams traded leads early on. 

After the Falcons gained a 5-4 lead, they were able to hold on. As a team, they had 10 kills and hit for 24%. 

Meyer led the charge this time with four kills in the set. Askin and Indrova both had two kills. 

The Zips were not as efficient, hitting for 14.3%. Akron did find ways to hang around in the set. 

The Falcons would win the set 15-13 to claim the match win. 

Both teams will run it back tomorrow at the Stroh. The game will start at 5 p.m. EST and will be available on ESPN+.