Bender Paces Cap to First Conference Win at Wilmington

Photo credit: Joe Maiorana
Photo credit: Joe Maiorana

WILMINGTON, Ohio – Capital University Volleyball earned its first conference victory of the season with a four-set win at Wilmington College, Tuesday night. Kristen Bender put forth her best line since the opening weekend of the season to lead Capital to its fifth overall victory of the year.

Bender, a senior from Fremont, Ohio, paced the Purple and White with 10 kills on the evening and hit .471 against the Quakers. Both served as team-highs on the night, and Bender's best performance since putting down 14 kills against Denison back on Sept. 3 against Denison University.

Capital (5-15, 2-0 OAC) spread the ball around on the offensive end with no player taking more than 17 attempts on the attack. As a result, three Crusaders hit at or better than .400 on the evening and freshman Kirsten Jutte (Fort Recovery, Ohio) collected her second career double-double. Jutte put up 42 assists and a career-high 13 digs.

A five-point run in the first set helped Capital create the distance necessary to maintain its lead all the way to a 25-21 opening-set victory.  Following a defeat in the second set, 25-22, Capital again used an early five-point rally to get and stay ahead of the struggling Quakers.

The fourth set was tighter, leading to a 22-22 tie before Capital's final breakaway. Jutte was key in the final three-point run, registering a kill and a service ace to end the match behind a 25-22 set win.

Wilmington falls to 1-16 overall and 0-2 in OAC play. Amber Rox led the team with 10 kills and 14 digs.

The loss halts a six-match losing streak for Capital. They look to break .500 in conference play at Ohio Northern University. The Polar Bears (17-3, 2-0) are receiving votes in the most recent American Volleyball Coaches Association poll, released on Oct. 4.