By Andrew Preston
The Lady Trojans 16-11 (8-2) returned home Wednesday night for their final Great Midwest Athletic Conference (G-MAC) match of the season against Kentucky Wesleyan College 10-14 (4-6), defeating the Lady Panthers in three sets.
The Lady Trojans honored lone senior Katelyn Atkinson during the pre-game. Atkinson, surrounded by teammates, her parents and Head Coach Crowley, was awarded roses and a basket of goods for her dedication to the team and game.
Over Atkinson’s four-year career for the Lady Trojans she produced 1644 kills, 1241 digs and over 1877 points. Atkinson’s performance on the court has placed her in the G-MAC record books. Currently she is first in kills and points per set, second in kills and points, fifth in digs, and seventh in service aces.
Atkinson was the 2015 G-MAC Co-Player of the Year.
John Radzimanowski, assistant coach, was also recognized during the pregame for completing his degree at Trevecca subsequently ending his time with the Lady Trojans as a coach.
In the first set the Lady Trojans started off hot taking the matches first five points. The Lady Panthers battled their way back into the match coming within one point of the Lady Trojans several times. The Lady Panthers eventually tied set at 19, but never gained a lead as an Atkinson service ace at 23-22 set up the Lady Trojans to take the set 25-22.
The second set saw some more terrific play out of the senior. The Lady Trojans maintained a steady lead throughout the entire set. The Lady Panthers challenged only once early on at 4-4, but could not find their way into this set. The Lady Trojans took the second set 25-17.
Tonight’s third set would be Atkinson’s final set played at the Trojan Fieldhouse as the Lady Trojans took the set 25-23.
The match did not come easily as the Lady Panthers were able to take their first lead extending it to as much as three (2-5) before the Lady Trojans tied it at 6. The teams would tie four more times in the final set. The Lady Panthers scared the Lady Trojans again taking a second lead at 16-17 pushing the Lady Trojans to 20-20 before the Lady Trojans were able to regain their lead.
Katelyn Atkinson ended her career with the game winning kill in dramatic fashion.
Tonight was dedicated and truly belonged to Atkinson as she had a game high 17 kills, along with 12 digs. The Lady Trojans produced a 37 kills and 59 digs as a team. There were 407 in attendance.
The Lady Trojans will travel to Lee University on Tuesday Nov. 8 to conclude their final regular season match. The Lady Trojans post season play will begin Nov. 17 as they look to build on last season’s G-MAC championship.