After defeating Ashland on Saturday morning the Missouri S&T Miners got an opportunity to avenge a loss against Upper Iowa in the championship match of the Middle of Everywhere Classic on Saturday evening. S&T (4-5) took the opening set but the Peacocks (9-0) won the next three to remain unbeaten and win the tournament 3-1 (23-25, 25-15, 25-15, 29-27).
The Miners came out strong in the opening set recording 19 kills against only seven errors in 40 chances and had an attack percentage of .300 in the frame. Emilee Schlader (Lewiston, Idaho/Lewiston) led S&T with five kills in the stanza while Calla Meyer (Clackamas, Ore./Clackamas) added four and Carlie Combs (O'Fallon, Mo./St. Dominic) and Ellen Schulz (Wildwood, Mo./Eureka) finished with three each. The Miners led by as many as four in the set and had to withstand a late rally from Upper Iowa to hang on and win the set 25-23.
The second and third sets belonged to the Peacocks as they combined to hit .343 as a team in the middle two sets and didn't trail in either of them. Kenzie Soeken led UIU with six kills in set two and Anna Winter had eight kills in set three.
The fourth set saw eight ties and six lead changes along the way. S&T built a 17-11 lead after a block from Carson Talley (St. Louis, Mo./Affton) and the match appeared to be headed for a decisive fifth set but the Peacocks rallied back thanks to an 11-5 run to tie it at 22 on a kill from Bethany Lovehaug. Upper Iowa had a chance the first chance to close it out but Payton Gannaway (Lawrence, Kan./Lawrence Free State) kept the Miners alive with a kill. Schlader gave S&T the lead back with a kill and a chance to extend the match but were unable to capitalize.
The Peacocks had another opportunity to win the match after Lauren Wombles and Haley Poula blocked Schlader at the net to make it 26-25. The Miners bounced back getting a kill from Talley and an error by Wombles to regain the lead at 27-26. That would be their last lead though as the Peacocks scored the final three points of the match to win 29-27.
Schlader led S&T with a career-high 17 kills while Schulz had a career-high 12 kills. Sarah McGinnis(Middleton, Wis./Edgewood) and Alexis White (Auburn, Wash./Riverside) combined for 55 assists while Corinne Stulce (St. Charles, Mo./Duchesne) dug up 18 attacks. The Miners finished the contest hitting just .159 as a team.
Winter led Upper Iowa with 13 kills while Soeken added 10 more. Malissa LeClaire dished out 32 assists while Ashley Larson finished with 23 digs. The Peacocks finished the match with .264 hitting percentage.
S&T concludes its six match homestand on Thursday hosting Drury to begin Great Lakes Valley Conference play at 7 p.m. at the Bullman Multi-Purpose Building.