Northern Kentucky def. Akron, 3-1
SMITHFIELD, R. I. – A red-hot Northern Kentucky team tripped up Akron Saturday afternoon, as the Zips suffered a 3-1 defeat on the final day of the Hampton Invitational at Bryant University.
NKU is off to a blazing start this season in its first year of Division I competition, making a name for itself and the Atlantic Sun Conference with a 12-1 preseason tournament record. Its only loss was a five-set decision against Manhattan one week ago.
Alex Cocklin led the offensive charge for Akron (7-5) in the tournament's championship match, leading both teams with a career-high 19 kills, but it wasn't enough to offset the four Norse hitters that ended the day hitting double figures.
All-Tournament Team selection Jill Paluch also had a career night in the back row with 20 digs for the Zips. Freshman Ashley Holder came up big defensively as well, chipping in 14 and helping Akron to a 67-62 digging advantage.
The first set was nearly identical on both sides of the net, with both teams knocking down 17 kills and hitting .208. The Norse put up seven scores on eight plays to take a 13-8 lead before Akron called a timeout to adapt its game plan. The Zips chipped away until back-to-back three-point runs tied the score at 23, thanks to three kills at the hands of Cocklin.
Akron denied an NKU set point and a Paluch service ace brought the Zips to within one point of a set win, but the Norse answered with three-straight points – a solo block and back-to-back kills from their scoring leader Jenna Ruble.
After holding a brief 7-6 advantage early in the second set, UA tied the score at nine, 10 and 11, but the 8-0 NKU run that followed turned out to be the deciding factor in that period. Attack errors plagued the Zips and would ended up costing them the set, digging an 0-2 hole similar to one they saw just last weekend in their own tournament.
Akron emerged the victor in the toughest battle of the night which would be the third set, when the Zips endured a total of 15 tie scores and eight lead changes to pick up its only victory of the day. UA out-hit NKU .250 to .179 in the third.
Paiton Twitty teamed up with Cocklin for one of her five block-assists of the match (Akron would post 12 block-assists in all) to complement an ace from Tina Dimitrijevs and put the Zips up by one at 22-21. Akron would need another block from Twitty and Morgan Kuhn and a final Cocklin kill to squeak by the Norse and force a fourth set.
The Zips were not able to muster a Binghamton-like comeback this time around. Akron kept pace at the beginning of the fourth, but saw the match slowly start to slip away. Four-straight points left Akron only trailing by one at the 15-14 mark, and forced a Northern Kentucky timeout. The Norse returned with three consecutive points of their own to maintain a lead that Akron would never catch, and ride it all the way to the tournament title.
With its non-conference tournament schedule now complete, Akron will return home to James A. Rhodes Arena to open Mid-American Conference play. The Zips will host Buffalo on Thursday, Sept. 20 at 7 p.m. MAC action will continue Saturday, Sept. 22 when the Zips travel to Ball State for a 7:30 p.m. tilt.
Ball State def. Wright State, 3-0
MUNCIE, Ind. - - The Ball State (6-6) offense carried over its hot hand from Friday night, posting its second straight season-best hitting mark, at .330 (52-14-115), in a 3-0 (25-15, 25-17, 25-16) sweep of Wright State (1-14) in Saturday's morning match of the Ball State Tournament at Worthen Arena.
In the second match of Saturday's morning session in the Ball State Tournament, Wyoming (11-2) scored a 3-0 (25-16, 25-18, 25-18) sweep of Pittsburgh (8-4). With each having 2-0 records to date in the tournament, the Cardinals and Cowgirls will square off in the championship match of the Ball State Tournament at 7 p.m. this evening.
Senior outside hitter Kara Bates (Bradley, Ill./Bradley Bourbonnais Community/Maryland) continued to pace the offensive charge, racking up a match-best 15 kills while hitting for a .444 (15-3-27) rate of success. She also tallied eight digs and a pair of block assists.
Senior transfer middle hitter Lisa Scott (McLean, Va. /Langley/Maryland) also turned in a strong performance, smashing a Ball State career-high 11 kills, including the Cardinals' first two points of the contest. At the net, Scott added a pair of solo blocks and two block assists to lead all players once again with four total blocks.
Junior opposite Lauren Grant (Eagan, Minn./Eastview/Cincinnati) added nine kills for the Cardinals and White, while hitting .389 (9-2-18).
In the backcourt, junior libero Catie Fredrich (Menomonee Falls, Wis./Menomonee Falls) led all players with 17 digs, helping the BSU backcourt hold a 55-39 edge in the category for the match. Freshman defensive specialist Taylor Richardson (Selma, Ind./Wapahani) also collected double-digit digs for the Cardinals with 11.
Heidi Splinter led the Wright State offense with nine kills, while adding 12 digs. Raiders libero Katie Glassmeyer collected a team-best 15 digs.
Overall, the Ball State defense limited the Wright State attack to a .091 (22-13-99) hitting mark thanks in part to a 6-3 advantage in team blocks.
Scott got the ball rolling fast for the Cardinals with kills on the first two rallies, and would add two more as Ball State played to a 10-3 advantage. Ball State would claim its first 10-point advantage at the 15-5 mark off a kill from junior outside hitter Kylee Baker (Plainfield, Ill./Plainfield North). Freshman setter Jenna Spadafora (Fort Wayne, Ind./Carroll) would produce the final two kills for the Cardinals in a 25-15 opening-set victory.
Wright State would pull out to a 10-7 lead in the second set, only to have the Cardinals rattle off the next nine points thanks in part to five kills from Bates and some strong serving from senior defensive specialist Lauren Schlaker (Oswego, Ill./Oswego East) who added an ace. From there, the Cardinals would go on to win the set 25-17 on another Spadafora blast.
The teams battled to an 8-8 deadlock in the third set, before a four-point run capped by another ace from Schlaker gave BSU the edge for good. A solo block from Scott would give the Cardinals match-point at 24-16, while senior defensive specialist/outside hitter Claire Farkas (Granger, Ind./Penn) ended the match on the next rally with her lone kill of the morning.
Ball State def. Wyoming, 3-1
MUNCIE, Ind. - - Behind another solid offensive effort, the Ball State (7-6) women’s volleyball team took home the Ball State Tournament title with a 3-1 (25-14, 19-25, 25-18, 25-23) victory over Wyoming (11-3) Saturday evening at Worthen Arena.
“I am extremely proud of the way the team played this weekend,” said Ball State head coach Steve Shondell. “We put together three really solid matches, including a win over a strong Wyoming team tonight. It’s great to see the results of our hard work in practice show up on the court come match time. Our play over the last two days should give us a confidence boost going into conference play next week.”
For her efforts in the two-day tournament, Ball State senior outside hitter Kara Bates (Bradley, Ill./Bradley Bourbonnais Community/Maryland) was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player after racking up a tournament-best 40 kills (4.00 kills-per-set), including 14 in Saturday night’s championship match against Wyoming.
Joining Bates on the all-tournament team from Ball State was junior libero Catie Fredrich (Menomonee Falls, Wis./Menomonee Falls) who led all players with 54 digs (5.40 digs-per-set) in the tournament, including a match-high 22 tonight’s victory.
Representing the tournament runner-up Wyoming was Jodi Purdy and Reese Plante, while Pittsburgh’s Margy Action and Wright State’s Heidi Splinter rounded out the all-tournament squad.
In addition to being one of four Cardinals to record double-figure kills in the championship match versus the Cowgirls, Bates racked up a season-high 18 digs for her second double-double of the tournament to help the BSU backcourt out-dig Wyoming 77-55 in the match.
Junior opposite Lauren Grant (Eagan, Minn./Eastview/Cincinnati) tied Bates for match-high honors with a season-best 14 kills of her own, while junior middle hitter Mindy Marx (Grand Haven, Mich./Grand Haven) added 11 kills and senior transfer middle hitter Lisa Scott (McLean, Va. /Langley/Maryland) blasted 10.
Marx would also end the night tied for match-high honors with six total blocks, while hitting for a .556 (11-1-18) rate of success. Scott hit .348 (10-2-23) for the night with one block assist.
Junior setter Jacqui Seidel (St. Charles, Ill./St. Charles East) led the Ball State offense to a solid .264 (58-21-140) hitting mark for the night, while picking up her seventh assist/dig double-double of the season with a career-high 50 assists and a career-high tying 16 digs. For the tournament, Seidel guided BSU to a .304 (158-45-372) hitting effort.
Purdy led the Wyoming attack with 14 kills, while Camille Coffman added 10. Becky Stewart posted a team-high 15 digs.
Thanks to its solid defensive play, the Cardinals limited the Cowgirls to a .192 (49-19-156) hitting mark for the night. Wyoming did have a 9.5-8 edge in total blocks, while serving up three aces to BSU’s one.
The Ball State women’s volleyball team opens Mid-American Conference play Thursday, when it hosts Toledo at 7 p.m. in a match that will be televised live by the Ball State Sports Network.
Purdue def. Bowling Green, 3-0
West Lafayette, Ind. – The Bowling Green and No. 14 Purdue volleyball teams entered Saturday evening’s contest with unblemished records at the Purdue Active Ankle Challenge. The Boilermakers proved to be just a bit too strong for the Falcons and earned the tournament championship with a 25-17, 25-12, 25-22 win.
“We lost to a very good team that exploited all of our weaknesses in this match,” BGSU Head Coach Danijela Tomic said. “We can not beat teams like Purdue and become a championship team if all of our players don’t show up to compete because we become a very predictable and one-dimensional team.”
Purdue hit .296 and was the first team to outdig the Falcons in six matches, holding a 43-34 edge in that category. Paige Penrod led the Falcons with 14 kills and was named to the all-tournament team for the second consecutive week. She had 54 kills on the weekend. Laura Avila was also named to the all-tournament team after posting 21 assists, following 64 and 50 assist matches Friday.
BGSU actually jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the first set but Purdue quickly overtook the Falcons. The Boilermakers used a 9-1 run midway through the frame to pull away.
The second set was close early as the Falcons were down only one at 7-6. But Purdue began to pull away and rolled late for the 25-12 win.
The third set was the most competitive and Bowling Green had a chance late to push it to a fourth set. Trailing 19-16, the Falcons score five straight to go ahead by two. However, the Boilermakers answered with five in a row of their own to take control back and earn the match victory.
Penrod’s 14 kills came on a .235 attack rate and Ashley Dunn added 12 digs for the Falcons. Kari Galen had a team-high three blocks.
“Our preseason is officially over with this match and our sole focus is now on the MAC,” Tomic said. “We need to use all of the lessons that we have learned in the last four weeks in order to have a successful rest of the season.”
Purdue improves to 9-2 with the win and BGSU falls to 4-7. The Falcons will open MAC play this weekend and have their home opener Friday night against Ohio for Alumni Night at 7 p.m. BGSU will then host Kent State Saturday at 7 p.m.
Buffalo def. Hartford, 3-0
Buffalo def. Syracuse, 3-0
BUFFALO, NY - In front of more than 1,000 people, the University at Buffalo volleyball team became Blue and White Classic champions as they swept Syracuse, 3-0 for the title. The victory was one of two 3-0 sweeps at the hands of the Bulls as they defeated Hartford earlier this afternoon. With the three victories this weekend, Buffalo evens its record at 6-6.
In the early match, Buffalo defeated Hartford, 25-19, 25-22, 25-5 as UB hit .333 for the contest opposed to just .040 for the Hawks. The Bulls totally turned the contest around as they trailed 21-15 late in the second set. UB got a steady serving performance from freshman Kasey Holstegge as it crept back into the match, taking a 22-21 lead. Following a Hartford kill, the Bulls rattled off three straight points, with the final two coming on UB blocks. In both cases freshman Amber Hatchett was in on the block.
That run paved the way for a dominating 25-5 in the third set, one of the largest margins of victory in team history. Buffalo scored the first eight points in the set and 12 of the first 13. The Bulls held other leads of 18-2 and 21-4 and scored the last four points of the set, with the final point coming on a Hatchett solo block.
The Bulls were able to get all 14 of their healthy players into the match, as Megan Lipski, Dana Musil and Liz Scott each had eight kills. Junior Carissa McKenna finished with seven kills and no errors on 14 swings. Junior Dani Reinert finished with 30 assists, two kills and four digs, while Kelly Svoboda finished with a match-high 15 digs.
UB had 15.0 total blocks in the win, including six off the bench from Hatchett. McKenna and Scott each finished with five.
"I thought the big run in the second set was crucial to our success against Hartford and it paved the way for that third set," said head coach Todd Kress. "It definitely gave us energy for not only that match, but through out the night."
The nightcap was a match for the ages with an announced crowd of 1,010 as the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee held its Athletes For Athletes event. The added support could be felt as Buffalo defeated the Orange, 30-28, 25-20, 25-22.
The opening set began with a big run from Syracuse, forcing the Bulls to make an early come back. The Orange got out to an 8-2 lead , but a 13-6 run from the Bulls gave them their first lead at 15-14. The set remained close with both teams unable to close it out. Syracuse had two opportunities to win the set, while the Bulls also had two before succeeding on the third try.
It was Buffalo that got out to the early lead in the second set going on an early 7-3 run. However, it remained tight late again with the two teams tied at 17-17. A quick 4-1 run by Buffalo gave it a 21-18 lead and UB scored the final three points of the set to go into the locker room up 2-0 in the match.
Like the first two, the third set was also highly contested as the teams traded the lead back and forth. With the set tied at 21-21, a Musil kill and Syracuse attack error gave the Bulls a two point cushion. Syracuse pulled back within 23-22, but another Musil kill gave the Bulls a 24-22 lead and double block from Akeila Lain and Scott clinched the match for UB.
"I can't express how grateful we are for the support we got tonight from the crowd," said Kress. "There were times in the match where they definitely pushed us through and made us better. This was an outstanding team win and I couldn't be more proud of how hard this group fought all weekend."
Musil was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player after 19 kills and just three errors against Syracuse. The 19 kills tie the school record for kills in a three-set match. The junior added seven digs and three service aces in the victory. Scott added 10 kills and nine digs, while Lain added seven kills and four blocks.
Reinert had another solid performance as she was also named to the All-Tournament team with 43 assists, six digs and an ace. The final All-Tournament selection was Svoboda, who added 15 digs and two aces. Lipski added three aces and six kills, while Tahleia Bishop had three kills off the bench.
The Bulls will now begin conference play on Thursday evening as they head to Akron for a 7:00 pm match.
IPFW def. Central Michigan, 3-1
MOUNT PLEASANT - Despite outperforming IPFW in nearly every statistical category Saturday night, Central Michigan dropped a hard-fought battle, 3-1.
The Mastodons (10-3) claimed each of their three victories by two points, taking down the Chippewas (6-5), 25-23, 27-25, 23-25, 25-23.
After dropping the first two sets of the match, the Chippewas were able to battle back and keep the match alive by taking the third set, 25-23.
After a kill by junior Danielle Gotham put the Maroon and Gold in front, 13-11, IPFW used a 4-0 run to reclaim the lead, 15-13. The run included a service error by CMU, an ace by the Mastodons and back-to-back setting errors, forcing CMU into a timeout.
The two teams continued to battle back and forth until sophomore Kaitlyn McIntyre took over, scoring three of the Chippewas' final four points to give CMU the win and keep the night alive.
CMU found itself in a hole again in the fourth set and continued to fight their way back into the match, coming from as far as six down to pull within one. IPFW extended its lead to 17-11 on an ace by Kendall Wienkes but was forced into a timeout after senior Lindsey Dulude slammed home a kill to pull CMU within three, 20-17.
Another kill by Dulude brought the Chippewas within two, 20-18, and the Mastodons were able to extend their lead to three, 24-20, on a setting error by freshman Jordan Timmer, but CMU still would not go away. IPFW recorded back-to-back attacking errors and Gotham and McIntyre came up with a huge double block to pull CMU back within one, 24-23, but a kill by Jessie Manwaring closed the match.
CMU outhit IPFW on the night with its .259 hitting percentage and also finished with three more kills, 60-57.
Four players finished with double-digit kills efforts, led by Dulude's 16. McIntyre finished the night with 14, while freshman Angie White and Gotham each had 11 apiece. Timmer finished the night with a career-high 48 assists while junior Jenna Coates had a match-high 18 digs.
The Chippewas are off until next Friday when they open Mid-American Conference play versus Northern Illinois at 7 p.m.
Western Kentucky def. Eastern Michigan, 3-1
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (EMUEagles.com) – The Eastern Michigan University volleyball team dropped its third and final match at the Coke/Michigan Invitational Saturday, Sept. 15. The Eagles fell to Western Kentucky University in four sets (21-25, 11-25,25-20, 15-25).
EMU fell to 10-6 on the season, while Western Kentucky advanced to 13-3 on the year.
Kristen Baker (Mentor, Ohio-Mentor) was named to the Coke/Michigan Invitational All-Tournament team after her display in the three matches the Eagles competed in.
Rachel Iaquaniello (Plymouth, Mich.-Dearborn Divine Child) led the Green and White with 16 kills, but it was Baker's .550 hitting percentage (12-1-20) that topped Eastern's offensive numbers. Iaquaniello notched her ninth double-double of the season with 12 digs atop of her 16 kills. Kim Hildreth (Novi, Mich.-Novi) posted 34 assists and Erin Short (Orrville, Ohio-Orrville) had 17 digs to lead the Eagles.
EMU dropped the opening frame 25-21 after hitting .212 (17-6-52). Iaquaniello and Baker led the offense with seven and six kills, respectively. Baker posted a .750 attack percentage (6-0-8).
Eastern hit just .143 (8-3-35) in the second set as they fell 25-11.
The Green and White was able to take the third set, hitting .500 (16-2-28). Hildreth notched 12 assists, while Iaquaniello posted six kills and Paige Roback (Maumee, Ohio-Notre Dame Academy) had four of her own.
Eastern struggled offensively in the final set, hitting just -.048, as they fell 25-15 in the final frame.
The Eagles host Western Michigan University in their first home match since Aug. 28 next weekend. The Broncos come calling Friday, Sept. 21, at 7 p.m. at the EMU Convocation Center.
Butler def. Kent State, 3-0
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — The Kent State volleyball team lost 3-0 to host Butler (25-16, 25-19, 31-29) Saturday (Sep. 15) at the Butler Invitational at Hinkle Fieldhouse in its final match before beginning Mid-American Conference play next weekend.
Senior middle blocker Kathy Krupa (Burbank, Ill.) recorded team-highs in kills (6) and total blocks (5) for Kent State. Junior Aleksandra Nowak (Damnica, Poland) had a team-high 15 assists and junior defensive specialist/libero Hannah Herc (Eden, N.Y.) led the way with 11 digs.
As they have done several times this season Kent State refused to go away easily after dropping the first two sets. They served for set point on four occasions in the final set, but were unable to capitalize on the opportunity to extend the match each time.
"This team has a lot of heart," commented first-year head coach Don Gromala. "They feel they have something to prove and that's the mentality they play with. We continue to play hard until the end of each practice and that carries over onto the court. But on the flip side, we need to take care of business on the front end and not end up in these situations as often."
The Golden Flashes (3-9) trailed 23-21 before rallying off three consecutive points on an attack error by Butler and back-to-back aces by sophomore outside hitter Lauren Engleman (Cincinnati, Ohio). A service error evened the set but a kill by freshman outside hitter Morgan Semmelhack (Elmhurst, Ill.) put the Flashes back ahead. Butler regained the lead before Krupa recorded a kill and then combined with Nowak on a block to take the lead once more. Kent State led for the final time at 29-28 before the Bulldogs took the set, 34-32.
Butler (10-4) was led by Belle Obert and Maggie Harbison, who posted 17 and 14 kills, respectively. Morgan Peterson recorded 32 assists for the Bulldogs. Defensively, Jadyn Yarling (13 digs) and Erica Stahl (six total blocks) led the way for Butler.
Kent State ended the weekend 0-3 and takes a 3-9 record into MAC competition.
"We played just about every lineup possible this weekend and think we moved forward in finding what the right combo is for us as a team," Gromala said. "We scheduled some of the schools that we did in order to compete against a level of opponent that will prepare us for MAC teams."
The Flashes will return to the court next weekend (Sept. 21-22) at conference foes Miami and Bowling Green.
Valparaiso def. Miami, 3-0
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - The Miami University volleyball team fell to Valparaiso, 0-3 (24-26, 18-25, 22-25) to Valparaiso Saturday morning at the Hoosier Classic. The loss ended the RedHawks' four-game winning streak. Miami is now 5-7 on the season, while the Crusaders improve to 7-6.
Junior libero Madison Hardy recorded 16 digs in the match. In the second set, she recorded her 1,000th career dig. She is the third libero and 13th player overall to join Miami's 1,000-dig club.
Kills from Madison Dodd, Lisa Treadway, Christina Menche and Meg Riley, along with a service ace from Amy Kendall helped the RedHawks jump to a 6-3 lead in set one. Menche and Dodd would each record two more kills as Miami maintained the lead throughout the majority of the set. Trailing 15-19, Valparaiso made its move. A 5-1 run would tie the score at 20. Sarah Chaney would put down a kill off of Riley's assist to put the 'Hawks back in front, but two straight points for the Crusaders would give them the lead for the first time since it was 2-1. The teams traded side outs until the score was tied at 24. From there, Valpo would record two straight points to earn a 26-24 win.
Lisa Treadway put down three kills as Miami opened up a 7-5 lead early in set two. The Crusaders answered with five straight points to go in front, 10-7. The RedHawks would tie it back up at 12, but an 8-3 run by Valparaiso would give it control of the set. Riley and Menche would put down kills, but the Crusaders eventually would come away with a 25-18 victory.
Once again Miami would jump to an early lead in set three, this time 6-1. Kills from Chaney and Riley helped maintain the five-point lead at 10-5. A 7-3 run from Valpo would cut the deficit to one, but Chaney responded with a kill to make it 14-12. The Crusaders then scored the next four points to take a 16-14 advantage, but a 5-1 run for Miami gave the RedHawks the lead right back at 19-17. The runs continued as three straight points for Valpo put it up, 20-19, but a kill from Riley tied it back up. The Crusaders would then close out the match with a 5-2 run to take a 25-22 win.
Riley had another triple double 11 kills, 18 assists and 12 digs. Chaney had 10 kills, while Menche had six kills and four block assists. Kendall led the RedHawks with 19 assists.
Miami concludes play at the Hoosier Classic later Saturday when it takes on Indiana at 7 p.m.
Northern Illinois def. Bradley, 3-2
PEORIA, Ill. - For the third time in under 24 hours, the Northern Illinois volleyball team played another match and battled for a comeback 20-25, 25-21, 22-25, 25-22, 15-11 win over Bradley Saturday afternoon at Renaissance Coliseum during the CEFCU Classic. The Huskies (9-7) made up for a 24-17 attack error disadvantage with edges over the Braves (6-5) in kills (74-65), aces (10-3) and digs (84-77) en route to their second comeback win in a week.
Last Saturday, it was another Missouri Valley Conference team that felt the wrath of the gritty Huskies as Missouri State fell victim. Today, it was Bradley, who NIU improved to 13-3 against all-time as the Huskies turned in their third five-set win in four tries this season and second win in as many days.
"We battled another tough team from the Missouri Valley Conference," said NIU Head Coach Ray Gooden. "This was our third match in less than 24 hours and it seems like we've been playing, playing, and playing. I thought our group did a really nice job."
After losing control of the first set midway through, the Huskies had to fight back for the second set. Down 14-10, a kill from senior middle Mary Kurisch (La Crosse, Wis./West Salem) and two straight BU attack errors kick-started a 15-7 run to tie the match at the break.
NIU then had a 17-15 lead slip away in the third set as three Brave kills and an NIU handling error fueled a 10-5 spurt to give Bradley the match lead again.
With their backs against the wall, the Huskies responded in a huge way, going up 13-7 on Bradley after a kill from junior middle Sarah Angelos (Waukegan, Ill./Waukegan). The Braves closed within two late as NIU struggled for a moment to force the fifth, but as she had been doing all match, sophomore outside MacKenzie Roddy (San Bernardino, Calif./Cajon) took over. First, she hammered down a kill to end the fourth.
Then, she helped NIU open the fifth set with a 5-1 lead as she started the frame with an emphatic cross-courter, added another kill for the fourth point, and served a laser that hit the net and trickled down for an ace. Roddy then scored four more kills in the set and added another ace to put NIU ahead 14-10.
Following a Bradley kill to erase the Huskies' first try at match-point, Angelos sealed the deal on a slide that sent the Huskies and their bench into an uproar.
Earning an all-tournament selection, Roddy was simply marvelous in her second match of the day, bouncing back from a tough 3-0 loss to Long Beach State a couple hours earlier. She went off for a career-high 30 kills on only 59 swings with just six errors for a .407 attack percentage. She also added a career-high four aces. For the tournament, she totaled 34 kills (4.25/set), 20 digs and four aces.
"MacKenzie Roddy was amazing tonight - 30 kills on 59 swings," Gooden said.
Three other Huskies tallied double-figure kills. Angelos had 14 to go along with a team-high four blocks. Kurisch and senior outside Meghan Romo (Valparaiso, Ind./Valparaiso) each added 13. Freshman setter Alexis Gonzalez (Fresno, Calif./Fresno) notched a season-high 59 assists and tied a season high with 16 digs for her ninth double-double and sixth in a row.
In the back row, senior libero Amber Walker (Juneau, Alaska/Juneau Douglas/Western Oregon) led the team with 23 digs, adding two aces to boot. Junior defensive specialist Justine Schepler (Sycamore, Ill./Sycamore) totaled 16 digs and senior defensive specialist Sue Hayes (Evergreen Park, Ill./Mother McAuley) had 10.
NIU's 74 kills and 10 aces as a team were both season highs and hadn't been done since the 2010 season.
NIU is now near the close of a 14-match road trip over a span of just 23 days. Representing 42 percent of the schedule, the expedition ends next week as the Huskies open up Mid-American Conference play. NIU, who is 7-5 on the excursion thus far, will take on Central Michigan in Mount Pleasant Friday, Sept. 21, at 6 PM CT and Eastern Michigan in Ypsilanti Saturday, Sept. 22, at 6 PM.
"Our team came out and did some really good things, especially battling on the road against a really tough Bradley team," Gooden said. "I'm really proud of our group for getting through this stretch of non-conference play. As we get ready for conference, we end on a high note and get to come back home to take a couple days off and get ready for Central Michigan and Eastern Michigan on the road. On the whole, it was a really good trip for us."
UNC def. Ohio, 3-2
Chapel Hill, N.C.- Ohio Volleyball showed resiliency and fighting spirit this evening but fell to North Carolina in five sets, 25-17, 16-25, 20-25, 25-14, 10-15. The Bobcats (5-6) had their 13-set winning streak snapped as UNC improved to 9-2.
Kelly Lamberti led the way with a season-high 21 kills and matched her season-high with 19 digs. Serena Warner also reached double figures with 10 kills, hitting .625.
Abby Gilleland had 37 assists to lead Ohio and Meredith Ashy had 17 digs. Freshman Karin Bull had seven blocks to lead the Bobcats and also notched five kills, both personal-bests
UNC jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first set but Ohio answered quickly and took a 7-5 lead on a Lamberti ace. The lead never went higher than three before UNC evened things at 13-13 on a kill by Chaniel Nelson.
The Bobcats put together a five-point run to go ahead 18-13 and eventually pulled away from the Tar Heels to take the first set 25-17. Ohio hit .343 in the set with 17 kills on 35 attacks.
The second set started evenly at 7-7 before a five-point run by UNC that culminated in an ace by Lauren Adkins. After cutting the gap to three at 14-11, the Tar Heels strung together four successive points (two kills by Adkins) to open up a seven-point cushion.
UNC pushed the lead to nine and that turned out to be the final margin, 25-16. The Tar Heels answered a subpar first set by hitting .371 and tallying four service aces
With the match tied at one game apiece, both sides knew the third set would be pivotal. Ohio took an 8-3 lead but the home side would respond and eventually forge ahead 11-10. With the game tied 13-13, UNC scored four in a row and forced a Bobcat timeout. The Tar Heels would take on another point for the final margin as they won the set 25-20.
Ohio could have folded right then and there, but the character of this Bobcat team showed itself once again. The Green and White grabbed a 9-5 lead and never looked back. Leading 16-12, the `Cats went on a 5-0 run that concluded with a dual block by Faith Robins and Bull.
Ohio pushed the lead to double figures with a set-ending four-point run on the strength of three Lamberti kills. The Bobcats hit .367 and recorded six blocks while limiting the Tar Heel attack to a -.062 hitting percentage.
UNC led 6-3 in the fifth and final set before Ohio rallied. Consecutive kills by Warner were followed by a Lamberti slam to even the set. However, the Tar Heels won the next two points and would not relinquish the lead.
UNC scored the final five points and hit .478 en route to winning the set 15-10 and the match in five games.
Ohio plays NC State tomorrow afternoon in Raleigh to complete this three-match road swing through North Carolina. Start time is scheduled for 2 p.m.
Toledo def. Campbell, 3-0
WINSTON-SALEM, NC - Toledo picked up its second victory of the day with a 3-0 (25-20, 25-23, 25-11) triumph over Campell on Saturday afternoon at Wake Forest's Black & Gold Challenge. The contest served as UT's final tuneup prior to beginning Mid-American Conference play on Thursday, Sept. 20 at Ball State.
Junior OH Lauren Rafdal and junior MB Dakota Harkins topped the Rockets' attack with 14 and 13 kills, respectively. The duo also was extremely efficient offensively with .462 (Rafdal) and .417 (Harkins) hitting marks and were joined by sophomore MB Brooke Frazer's impressive .500 hitting mark.
UT hit an impressive .343 as a team and limited the Camels to a .187 mark.
"We played well for the most part and I think we're starting to establish more of a rhythm with our play," Toledo Head Coach Greg Smith said. "It was encouraging to win two of three on the road this weekend and we're excited to get our conference season started next weekend."
Toledo def. Appalachian State, 3-0
WINSTON-SALEM, NC - Toledo (5-6) rebounded from Friday night's disappointing performance with a convincing 3-0 (25-20, 25-20, 25-18) sweep over Appalachian State (3-9) on Saturday morning. The contest was the Rockets' first of two matches today at Wake Forest's Black & Gold Challenge.
"We played relaxed and with much more enthusiasm this morning," Toledo Head Coach Greg Smith said. "It was good to see us rebound, but we still need to shore up our blocking and serving."
Junior MB Dakota Harkins spearheaded UT's attack with a career-high 14 kills and .550 attack percentage. Junior OH Jordan Kielty also was in double figures with 13 terminations and a .242 hitting mark.
"Dakota and Jordan really stepped up for us this morning," Smith said. "We hit .333 as a team, and it was a good overall team effort."
Senior libero McCall Paynter led Toledo defensively with 13 digs.
Lindsey Sauls was Appalachian State's offensive lead with 11 kills and a .526 ATK%.
The Rockets trailed midway through Set 1 by a 13-10 margin, but an 8-1 burst gave UT a four-point cushion it wouldn't relinquish. Keying the run were three kills from Kielty, two from Harkins and a pair of aces from junior S Adria Pryor.
Toledo broke free from the Mountaineers in the second set by scoring five straight points when the score was tied 17-17. Set 3 saw the Rockets lead the entire way after ASU had scored the first point of the set.
UT will wrap up play in the tournament at 4:30 p.m. with a matchup against Campbell.
Senior libero McCall Paynter led Toledo defensively with 11 digs.