Junior setter Lexi Kleva came within one of her career-highs for assists and digs to help lead the Lake Forest College volleyball team to an 11-25, 28-26, 23-25, 25-23, 15-13 victory at Illinois College on Friday.
Kleva tallied 48 assists and 19 digs and added a pair of blocks on the night. Senior libero Briahna Havis also had 19 digs to share team-high honors.
Sophomore outside hitter Grace Larson led the Foresters and matched her career-high with 22 kills and also reached double figures with a dozen digs. Senior outside hitter Paige Jespersen posted a double-double as well with 11 kills and 18 digs.
The Foresters recorded 13 blocks in the contest and senior Maxie Mottlowitz led the way with nine, including four solos.
Illinois College won the first three points of the match and later used an 11-2 run to pull away in the opening set.
Lake Forest took its first lead of the night at 14-13 in the second set. Ahead 16-15, the Foresters ratlled off five straight points to seemingly take controp of the set. The Lady Blues, however, came back and took the lead at 24-23 and again at 25-24 and 26-25. After fighting off set point three times, Kleva set up Larson for back-to-back kills to even the match at one set apiece.
The home team won five straight points in set three but the Foresters responded with four in a row to tie the score at 12. Neither team led by more than two points the rest of the way and Illinois College held on to take the set.
Lake Forest trailed by as many as four points in the fourth set but eventually came back to tie the score at 18. The score was tied four more times before back-to-back points by the Foresters gave them the set and tied the match again.
The fifth and deciding set was tied eight times, the last at 13. The visitors broke the tie with two straight points to take the set and the match.
Lake Forest is now 6-14 overall this season and 2-5 in Midwest Conference play. Illinois College fell to 13-11 overall and 3-5 in the league.
The Foresters will continue their trip to the southern end of the Midwest Conference with a match at Monmouth College Saturday afternoon at 1:00.