EAU CLAIRE, Wis. -- The UW-Stevens Point volleyball team (25-8) defeated UW-Eau Claire (20-9) in four sets at the WIAC Championship (presented by Culver's) to advance to Saturday's title match.
Senior April Gehl (Hilbert, Wis./Hilbert) followed up her WIAC Offensive Player of the Year honor with a double-double in the victory. Her 20 kills gives her 593 on the season, breaking her own single-season school mark set last season. She added a game-high 28 digs as well.
Junior Ellie Adams (Racine, Wis./William Horlick) also had a double-double with a game-high 47 assists and 11 digs. Tara Emme (St. Nazianz, Wis./Valders) and Maddie Lawson (West Allis, Wis./Nathan Hale) added double-digit kills with 15 and 12, respectively. Emma Peterson (Bloomington, Minn./Thomas Jefferson), Mazie Nagel (Stratford, Wis./Stratford) and Kelsie Belfiori (Merrill, Wis./Merrill) were also in double figures in digs with 21, 12 and 10.
The Pointers took advantage of eight UWEC attack errors and got kills six different players to open a 16-6 lead in the first set. Gehl powered two late kills as the Pointers took the first set, 25-17.
Gehl started the second set with a kill and UWSP never trailed in the set. She added six kills, including the new school record as the Pointers rolled to a 25-12 win and a 2-0 lead.
Kills by Lawson and Nagel gave UWSP a 2-1 lead, but the Blugolds used a 7-2 run to jump ahead 8-4. A pair of kills late by Lawson kept UWSP close, but UWEC savaged the set with a 25-21 win.
Gehl and Hailey Jarr (Bloomer, Wis./Bloomer) each had two kills to erase an early deficit. Emme added four kills in an 8-1 run as the Pointers leapfrogged into a 21-17 lead. Lawson gave UWSP match point with a kill and Gehl closed out the win with a solo block for the 25-21 victory.
The Pointers travel to UW-Whitewater on Saturday (Nov. 9) for a 7:00 p.m. match. The winner receives the WIAC's automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament.