No. 19 Blinn opens the Region XIV tournament with a 3-2 win over Lee

CARTHAGE, Texas – No. 19 Blinn College volleyball remains the favorite in the Region XIV Championship Tournament after opening the postseason with a 3-2 victory over Lee College on Friday afternoon in the Arthur Johnson Gymnasium.

The Blinn Buccaneers downed Lee College by the score of 25-16, 25-21, 23-25, 21-25, and 15-12, to increase their record to 24-7.

"The postseason is a fun time to compete and we fought hard, played together, and earned another opportunity Saturday," said Kalie Mader, Blinn head coach.

Roxanne Morris led the Buccaneers with 15 kills, while Claire Chapman followed with 13 and Kayla Valigura with eight. Julia Fritz led the defense with 17 kills, while Morris recorded 12 and Chapman came up with 10. Kylee Kaaihue and Valigura each tallied six blocks each.

The Buccaneers are the No. 1 seed in the tournament and head to the winners' bracket after pushing through in the fifth set for the victory.

Blinn opened the match strong after dishing Lee College a nine-point deficit in the first set, and maintained control of the match with a 25-21 win in the second set. Lee College rallied back in the next two sets to even the match. Both teams traded points in the fifth set until the Buccaneers pulled ahead by three to defeat Lee College, 15-12.

Blinn will face No. 9 Panola College on Saturday, Nov. 4 at 9 a.m. The winner of the game will play again at 5 p.m., while the loser will play at 1 p.m.

Blinn has competed in intercollegiate athletics since 1903 and captured 36 NJCAA national championships since 1987.