Trailblazers fall to No. 16 Indian Hills at Cardinal Classic


PARK HILLS, Mo. – The Vincennes University volleyball team climbed back into the NJCAA Division I National rankings this week receiving votes for the Top-20 poll after riding a five-game winning streak.

The Blazers got their first opportunity to defend this National recognition Friday afternoon against No. 16-ranked Indian Hills Community College on day one of the Mineral Area College Cardinal Classic.

VU got off to a fast start against IHCC, jumping out to an early 9-6 lead, before Indian Hills rallied back to take the lead back at 11-10.

Vincennes would again build a small lead before the Warriors answered back to outscore VU 6-1 and take a 17-14 lead.

The two teams traded points before IHCC closed out the first set strong with a 6-0 scoring run to take the opening set 25-17 and take a 1-0 match lead.

The Trailblazers again built a good lead early in set two, leading 14-6 before Indian Hills went on a 4-0 scoring run to cut the deficit in half.

Vincennes looked to hold on late and even the match, serving set point at 24-22 before IHCC would rally late to out score VU 6-2 and take set two in overtime 28-26 and earn a 2-0 match lead over the Blazers.

Set three began as another back-and-forth battle, with VU having a 4-0 scoring run, which was immediately answered by a 6-0 Indian Hills scoring run.

Vincennes faced match point at 24-21 before the Trailblazers rallied to even the score at 24-24 with three unanswered.

VU would use this to later take the lead and serve set point at 27-26 before the Warriors again closed out the set strong scoring three unanswered to take set three and the match over the Trailblazers 29-27.

“We went toe to toe with Indian Hills in every set and led in every set but ran into a wall at the end,” VUVB Head Coach Gary Sien said. “Whether it was missed serves, blocks or digs, we either misplayed a ball or did not execute in crucial moments and that might only be two or three plays per set.”

“Despite that, we played hard and had some great moments,” Sien added. “In a way and taking nothing away from Indian Hills, they had to play at another level to beat us. I feel that the match could have gone the other way if we had made those handful of plays here and there.”

The Trailblazer offense was led by sophomore Paige Parlanti (Las Vegas, Nev.) who recorded another double-double with a team-high 16 kills, 13 digs and two blocks.

Sophomore Audrey Buis (Franklin, Ind.) and freshman Laura Tavares (Merida, Venezuela) were the next VU scorers, each recording five kills on the game.

Buis also added seven digs and two blocks, while Tavares added three digs and five blocks.

Sophomore middle Kennedy Sowell (Effingham, Ill.) and freshman Elisa Dalla Pozza (Vincenza, Italy) each recorded three kills, while Sowell added four blocks and Dalla Pozza led the Blazers with seven blocks, two digs and one set assist.

Freshman Isadora Dias (Rio Grande de Norte, Brazil) rounded out the VU offense with one kill and three digs.

Sophomore setter Maecy Johnson (Chrisman, Ill.) continues to run the Trailblazer offense very efficiently, ending her day with 26 set assists, four digs and three blocks.

Sophomore libero Morgan Netcott (Montague, Mich.) controlled the Vincennes back row defense, ending with a team-high 14 digs and one ace.

“Paige was exceptional offensively as they had a hard time stopping her throughout the match,” Sien said. “Elisa, who is one of the top blockers in the country, had some big blocking numbers and she has consistently had them for almost a month now.”

“Overall, we lacked offense and needed one or two more hitters to step up and score,” Sien added. “I think that was a part of the difference.”

The Trailblazers will look to end the weekend on a high note tomorrow, Oct. 14 when VU returns to Mineral Area College for the final day of the 2023 Cardinal Classic.

VU will begin the day by taking on Hutchinson Community College at 10 a.m. eastern, followed by facing host Mineral Area College at 12 p.m. eastern.

“We need to hold on to the lead,” Sien said. “We need to be on task and score when we are serving tomorrow. That is when you make your runs. When you serve and either get a block for a point or a dig where you would transition to score on offense.”


Indian Hills – 25   28   29   x   x

VUVB (25-5, 9-0) – 17   26   27   x   x


Audrey Buis – 6 points, 5 kills, 2 block assists, 7 digs

Morgan Netcott – 1 point, 1 ace, 14 digs

Paige Parlanti – 17 points, 16 kills, 2 block assists, 13 digs

Isadora Dias – 1 point, 1 kill, 3 digs

Maecy Johnson – 1.5 points, 3 block assists, 4 digs, 26 set assists

Kennedy Sowell – 5 points, 3 kills, 4 block assists

Elisa Dalla Pozza – 7 points, 3 kills, 1 solo blocks, 6 block assists, 2 digs, 1 set assist

Laura Tavares – 7.5 points, 5 kills, 5 block assists, 3 digs