Junior Lyndsey Broerman spent the past two seasons serving only as a spectator for the Lady Toppers.
Suffering from three knee surgeries prior to this season, Broerman’s main role was to contribute from the bench.
But during the latter part of this season, Broerman has brought more to the table than the typical bench player.
Broerman came up big against rival Florida International Friday night with 15 kills in a three-game win (30-22, 30-23, 30-25). The win increased Western’s home win streak to 31.
“Lyndsey played well and was a big lift for us,” coach Travis Hudson said.
In the last meeting last season, Western and FIU (10-6, 3-2 Sun Belt) played aggressively to the very end of the five-game match.
“FIU is always energetic and brings it every match,” Broerman said. “Our main focus was to be just as competitive as they were.”
And the Lady Toppers did not disappoint.
“We definitely came together and played with competitive spirit,” junior Amanda Schiff said. “I think the things we worked on in practice showed in this match.”
In Game One, the Lady Toppers had a sluggish start and trailed early. But once Western regained the lead at 15-14, the rest of the game was under its control.
Even though this match seemed like a difficult game for Western on paper, Hudson said he was not shocked with the sweep against the third-place team in the Sun Belt East.
“We played very well,” he said. “We were difficult for them because we were terrific offensively.”
Western had four players with double-digit kills. Schiff added 13 kills while sophomores Crystal Towler and Jessie Wagner both had 11.
Sophomore Caron Blotch led the match with 50 assists. Senior libero Tracy May had 12 digs to become the third player in school history to reach the 1,500 digs mark.
In the eight matches played in Diddle Arena, Western has not allowed an opposing team to win a game.
“I feel like we’re getting into a groove here,” Hudson said. “If we continue to step forward, we’ll be a great team.”
The Lady Toppers (17-5, 4-1) will try to remain a strong force in the conference race this weekend when they play New Mexico State (14-4, 4-0), the first-place team in the West, and Denver (12-6, 3-1) in Diddle Arena.
Friday is a rematch between Western and NMSU, who played in last season’s SBC championship game. The Lady Toppers then play Denver on Saturday at 7 p.m.
Reach Amber North at [email protected]