St. Louis, Mo. - It was a crowded evening inside Mabee Gymnasium tonight as the Griffins defeated the Illinois College Lady Blues 3-1. Prior to the game, Fontbonne recognized all six graduating seniors as well as senior Lynsey Wehrenberg's career milestones from the Webster win earlier this week.
The Griffins got off to a slow start and trailed 16-23 before four straight points pulled them within two of the Lady Blues who would finish with their only win of the night (25-22).
Second set action was back and forth throughout the entire match that rendered 62 total points. Trailing 27-28, senior middle hitter Alli Brown slammed down a point to keep the Griffins from going down by two sets. Senior Kersten McDonough then followed with a powerful kill to give Fontbonne the edge but Illinois College wouldn't let down. The Lady Blues scored two points to take the lead before Richter struck from the middle that landed near the left line to give Fontbonne a 31-30 lead. Senior Bailey Benes finished off the exciting set with a kill from the right side to tie the game.
Fontbonne dominated play in the third set. The Griffins led 21-9 before Illinois College reached double digits and Fontbonne secured the 25-12 victory to lead the game 2-1.
In the fourth set, Fontbonne trailed 5-8 until the Griffins scored four straight to take the lead. The game was then tied 20-20 before Fontbonne nudged a 24-21 advantage. The Lady Blues would hold on for one more point before sophomore Megan McKenzie came in clutch with the game winning kill from the right side. McKenzie hit .500 on the night and made just one error as she tallied 12 kills on 22 attempts.
As a team the Griffins recorded 15 total blocks, a season high and what could possibly be a record. Fontbonne doesn't currently have a list of single-game records, but it's the most number of team blocks in a single game since at least 2011.
Before the game, Richter needed just two more block assists to become Fontbonne's single-season block assist record holder. The Troy, Ill. native completed the task in the second set and didn't stop there. Richter notched seven block assists on the night, tying a career-high set earlier this year. She currently holds the single season block assists record, but her senior teammate Alli Brown might just get in her way. Brown tallied eight block assists in the win, a career-high for total blocks in a game as well as a career-high for block assists in one game. She is competing against Richter for the final block assists record. Brown has 74 block assists while Richter has 75 with three games to go.
McDonough recorded the game-high 22 kills with a .327 average and 18 digs. She now has 1,349 career kills, inching closer to Fontbonne's all-time mark of 1,370 kills.
Senior Mariana Rogers recorded 20 digs in the match. She now has 458 digs in her career, 10th on the single season digs list for Fontbonne. With three games left, she could reach as high as seventh or eighth on the list.