The Barton Community College volleyball team rallied for a fifth set victory Wednesday night at the Barton Gym winning 16-25, 25-21, 20-25, 25-20, and 15-10 over Pratt Community College. Victorious in their final three home matches of the season, the Cougars sent out sophomore members of the squad with the come from behind win improving the sixth place Cougars to 6-8 in conference play and 9-21. Pratt, who is in a battle for a home first round match in the approaching region tournament, slipped to fifth place at 8-6 and 17-15 overall. Barton will wrap up regular season play next week against the top two Jayhawk teams beginning with No. 19 ranked Hutchinson Community College on Tuesday followed by a Thursday road trip to Liberal closing out the schedule at Seward County Community College. First serve for both contests slated for 6:30 p.m.
Pratt jumped out to an early 6-1 lead in the first set extending the lead out to six scoring five of the next three six points. The Cougars climbed back in it drawing within two at 13-11 but two straight leading to eight of the next twelve grew the lead back out to six. Following a Barton timeout a Beaver service error would be the last Cougar point as the Beavers closed out with four straight winning convincingly 25-16.
The second set was all Cougars early on scoring six of seven to lead 6-2. Pratt then cut it to two before three straight highlighted by an Emily Deterding kill pushed the lead out to 9-4. Coming out of a Pratt timeout, another Deterding kill and another point grew the lead out to seven. Back came the Beavers with five straight to close within two but following a Barton timeout, the Cougars responded with four straight capped by a Jordan Edelman black giving Barton command at 15-9. The lead grew to set point at 24-17 as four straight by the Beavers only delayed the inevitable as Nathalia Gouveia's lone kill in the set was the game winner.
The Cougars were out-of-sync to begin the third leading to a 5-0 Pratt run to lead 6-2 early in the third. Scoring six of seven, the Beaver lead grew to seven before four straight Barton points cut it to three. The lead remained at three at 17-14 before the Beavers broke the set open for good scoring five of the next six going on for the five point 25-20 win.
Six straight including consecutive Deterding kills built an early five point lead for the Cougars in the fourth. The Beavers would close to within two twice but a 6-0 run mid-set ballooned the Barton lead out to 20-12. The lead reached nine at 23-14 before a five point Beaver stretch made it interesting but the Cougars prevailed forcing the fifth with the 25-20 victory.
Entering only its fifth five set match of the season, the defensive play by Lydia Konrade helped spring the Cougars out of the gates with a three point lead. Pratt responded with the next three to tie at five. With the teams trading the next couple of points, Deterding made one of the many key defensive plays of the match with a diving dig near the Barton bench leading to a Cougar point swaying momentum to the Cougars' 8-6 lead at the exchange. Barton maintained a two point edge until breaking it open late as Deterding hammered down the last three points in the 4-1 run giving Barton the 15-10 win.
On the final home match of season, it was only fitting that two sophomores led the offensive attack behind Deterding's fifteen and Edelman's twelve accounting for twenty-seven of the Cougars' fifty-one kills. Three freshmen also had solid matches with Brooke Joslyn swinging for a .444 attack joining Olivia Naccarato with eight kills each while Gouveia had seven. Mallory McQueen recorded her tenth double-double of the season with forty assists and twenty digs. Gouveia finished one behind with twenty while Deterding also had a double night adding fourteen digs to her fifteen kills for her fifth double-double of the season.