Men’s Volleyball wins 5-set thriller over UHSP to split matches on trip to St. Louis

ST. LOUIS – Kansas Wesleyan Men’s Volleyball’s dramatic comeback win in a 5-set thriller over University of Health Sciences and Pharmacy led the Coyotes to a split of two matches on Tuesday.


The Coyotes dropped a straight set decision to No. 14 ranked Missouri Baptist before heading to UHSP for the match with the Eutectics.


KWU trailed 7-3 in the fifth set of the match with UHSP after already battling back from a 2-0 set deficit in the match to send it to the decisive fifth.


The Coyotes rattled off four straight points to tie the fifth at 7-7, and grabbed their first lead at 9-8 on a kill by Jalen Watt (FR/South Hadley, Mass.). The Coyotes fell behind 12-11 in the match, but after a KWU timeout, UHSP had a service error to tie it at 12 and KWU grabbed the lead on a kill by Marcus Taylor.


UHSP tied it at 13, but the Coyotes got a kill from Kahlib Lawrence (FR/Burbank, Calif.) to take the lead and won it on a hitting error by the Eutectics.


Four of the five sets were decided by two points as UHSP won the first two 25-23. KWU won the third 25-23, and took the fourth 25-21.


The first set never saw either team lead by more than three points, as the Coyotes tied the set at 23-all before UHSP took the 25-23 win.


In the second, UHSP took a 3-0 lead to start, but five in a row by the Coyotes made it 5-2 after a block by Taylor and Lawrence. UHSP led 20-15 when the Coyotes came roaring back to tie it at 20 on Colin Lindo (JR/Las Vegas, Nev.)’s service ace. After falling behind 23-21, the Coyotes again tied it at 23 before UHSP won the set.


The Coyotes took a 4-0 lead in the third, but UHSP scored the next five to take the lead. KWU built a 14-10 lead on a Lawrence kill only to see UHSP come back at tie it at 14. UHSP tied it at 23-all before the Coyotes won the set on Viet Nguyen (SO/Wichita, Kan.) kill and a hitting error by UHSP.


KWU led 9-6 in the fourth when the Coyotes went on a 5-0 run to make it 14-6 after back-to-back aces from Watt. The Coyotes led by as many as seven at 21-14 before UHSP got back into it at 23-21 before KWU got the final two points of the set.


Four Coyotes reached double figures in kills led by 15 from Justin Burras (FR/Burbank, Calif.). Nguyen added 13, Watt had 12 and Taylor had 10. The Coyotes set a new school record for kills in a match with 64 in the match. Taylor had 48 assists and nine digs. Lindo, Watt and Lawrence all had four blocks each. Hung Nguyen (FR/Allen, Texas) had 14 digs and Jeremy Lapeze (FR/Burbank, Calif.) added 13.


The Coyotes dropped a 3-set match to No. 14 Missouri Baptist 25-9, 25-13, 25-18 earlier in the day.


In the first set, MBU jumped out to a 9-2 lead and were leading 18-9 when the Spartans ran off the final seven points of the set to win.


KWU led early in the second set, but MBU pushed out to a 14-7 lead and pulled away for the 25-13 win.


KWU trailed 20-13 in the third, when the Coyotes made a little run getting within four at 21-17, but MBU was able to score four of the final five points to take the match.


Burras and Viet Nguyen had four kills each to lead the way. Taylor and Angel Diaz (SO/Waukegan, Ill.) had seven assists each. Lapeze had six digs.


KWU is back in action this weekend at Morningside on Friday evening at 7 p.m., then a triangular with Ottawa and Clarke (Iowa) on Saturday in Ottawa. KWU’s first match, a GPAC clash with Ottawa is at 1 p.m.