The Phoenix (3-7, 1-2 Mid-South) ended a four-match losing streak with the win and picked up their first conference victory of the season as well.
Serna registered her fifth match this season with double-figure kills while Wickham posted her second consecutive double-digit outing and did so with just one error in 23 total attempts. Cumberland also netted 12 block assists in the match, with three apiece for Raegan Moeller and Masa Nalovic.
Serna and Moeller posted a block on the first point of the match for the Phoenix and each player added a kill for an early 5-2 CU edge. Three kills by Abby Akins and another from Serna pushed the lead to 12-7 Cumberland, forcing a timeout by Shawnee State (8-8, 0-3).
Serna collected two more kills and Wickham added a pair as well for a 19-11 advantage. Wickham posted two more kills and Nalovic finished off the set with one of her own for a 25-17 opening set for the home team.
The final two sets were much tighter, with the Bears getting kills from Macie Rhodes and Tyanna Smith in the early going to even the set at five. Serna registered four kills in six points, putting the Phoenix ahead, 12-7, and Cumberland extended the lead to 16-9 behind kills from Luciana Arena, Serna and Nalovic as well as a service ace by Akins.
Wickham registered two kills for a 21-14 advantage, but the Bears ran off five straight points, including kills by Nashail Shelby, Emily McKibben and Rhodes. A kill by Akins ended the mini-run, but an attack error by the Phoenix and a block from Smith and Isabella Gill pulled SSU within 22-21.
Serna’s kill and a block from Nalovic and Arena ended the set for CU, 25-21.
Cumberland trailed in the first half of the third set thanks to kills from Emily Cooper, Shelby and McKibben as well as three errors by the Phoenix. The Bears committed a service error and three straight attack errors, allowing CU to even the set at 10.
Serna’s ace and kill along with a kill by Wickham made it 14-11 Phoenix, but Smith posted a kill and Cumberland had two consecutive errors to even the set again, this time at 15.
Kills by Akins and Nicole Carey inched the Phoenix ahead, 18-16, but attack errors by the home team squared the match at 19. Carson Roney posted two kills and Roney and Gill added a block for a 23-20 Bears lead.
Cumberland scored the final five points of the match thanks to a pair of kills from Wickham and a final kill from Akins for a 25-23 victory.
Cumberland will play at home again Saturday at 11 a.m. at the University of Pikeville.