MILWAUKEE, Wis. -- Junior Amy Angelos (Waukegan, Ill./Waukegan) tallied a season-best 15 kills and three other Bradley players notched double-doubles to help the Braves to a five-set victory at defending Horizon League regular-season champion Wisconsin-Milwaukee Friday afternoon. Match scores in favor of BU were 25-20, 25-19, 18-25, 17-25, 15-9.
After taking the first two sets from the Panthers, Bradley never led in the third and fourth sets as the Braves went to a deciding fifth set against the preseason Horizon League favorites on their home court. Bradley (4-0 overall) forced UWM into seven hitting errors in the fifth set and claimed the match with a 15-9 fifth-set victory and ended a 10-match home win streak for the Panthers.
Just the third team in school history to open a season with a 4-0 record, Bradley has opened a season with four consecutive wins for the first time since 2000 to match the best start to a year in program history. The victory was BU's second road win of the year, marking the most road wins in a season for the Braves since 2006 and Bradley won a five-set match on the road for the first time since winning a five-setter at Western Illinois on Nov. 1, 2005.
Angelos led the Braves with a season-best 15 kills and was joined in double figures by junior Alise Tupuritis (Des Plaines, Ill./Maine West) with 12 kills and senior Madelyn Ervin (Lewis Center, Ohio/Olentangy), who added a season-high 11 kills.
Both Tupuritis and Ervin added 10 kills for their first double-doubles of the year, while setter Madison Kamp (Orland Park, Ill./Chicago Christian) had 42 assists and 12 digs. Sophomore Allie Falter (Lincoln, Neb./Pius X) collected a career-best eight block assists, helping Bradley tally 12 blocks in the match.
Tied at 18-18 in the first set, Bradley took control of the opening frame with a 5-0 run. Tupuritis recorded three kills during the closing stretch as the Braves took the opener 25-20. Ervin and Angelos each had four kills in the first set, helping BU hit .306 as a team.
Bradley scored the first five points of the second set and never trailed in a 25-19 win. Tupuritis helped highlight the victory with six kills and the duo of Ervin and Falter teamed for a block to put the finishing touches on the victory as the Braves boasted a .314 attack percentage in the frame.
Wisconsin-Milwaukee (2-2 overall) slowed down the BU attack in the third set, digging up 20 balls and limiting the Braves to an .023 attack percentage. After Bradley pulled within three points (21-18) on a Falter kill, UWM answered with four consecutive points to avoid the sweep by taking the third set 25-18.
Bradley's offensive struggles continued into the fourth set and the Panthers were able to pull even in the match with a 25-17 win to force a deciding fifth set.
Much like the second set, the Braves scored the first five points of the final frame, with Falter highlighting the opening spurt with a pair of kills. Bradley's lead was trimmed to one point (9-8), when Tupuritis would help the Braves close out the match. She started a 6-1 BU run with a kill and later added consecutive blocks before sealing the match with an ace.
Bradley continues play at the Panther Invitational Saturday with an 11 a.m. match against East Carolina.