By Tim Glon
ADA — No. 12-ranked Ohio Northern got 18 kills from senior All-American Chelsea Huppert (Bremen, Ind.) and 12 from freshman Megan Mahon (Amelia/West Clermont) to post a 22-25, 25-18, 25-9, 23-25, 15-10 victory over Hiram in a non-conference volleyball match at the ONU Sports Center on Wednesday night.
The Polar Bears (13-3 overall) also got nine kills from junior Hope Williamson (Noblesville, Ind./Heritage Christian) and eight kills from senior Sydney Bapst (Grove City) and extended their winning streak to seven matches.
The Terriers (11-7) were led by Jaya Martin with 14 kills and Kiara Franks with 11 kills.
Ohio Northern hit a blistering .314 for the match, including an even .500 when the hosts won set two 25-18.
Northern started each set quickly and was the first to point 15 in four of the five sets.
ONU led 15-9 in the first set before HC rallied to tie the set at 17-all. The Terriers closed the set with a 4-1 run to win 25-22 and lead one set to none.
The Polar Bears battled back in Set 2, with 13 kills on just 26 attempts with no errors, and exploded to a 14-6 lead.
The advantage grew to 20-10 before ending at 25-18.
Set three was even more impressive for the Polar Bears, as they enjoyed leads of 8-0, 14-2 and 20-4.
Hiram led 14-9 in the fourth set before a 5-0 run, keyed by back-to-back-to-back kills by Williamson, tied the set at 14-14.
HC went on a 5-2 run to go up 24-20, but two Mahon kills sandwiched around a kill from junior Paige Hartings (Coldwater), drew Ohio Northern within 24-23.
A kill by Franks closed out the set and evened things up at 2-2 heading into the fifth and deciding set.
ONU rattled off five consecutive points with kills by Huppert, Mahon and junior Katie Wade (Battle Creek, Mich./Harper Creek) to take a quick 6-2 lead in the set.
The teams traded points until a two consecutive blocks sparked a 3-0 run to extend Northern's lead to 14-8.
A kill from Mahon ended the match at 15-10.
Wade dished out 41 assists and senior McKenna Hostetler (Plain City/Alter) had 28 digs for ONU.
As a team, Ohio Northern hit .314 for the match with 68 kills and only 13 errors on 175 attempts, while Hiram hit .148 with 51 kills and 24 errors on 183 attempts.
The Polar Bears will return to Ohio Athletic Conference action on Friday with a 7 pm match at Marietta.