MOUNT PLEASANT - Senior Lindsey Dulude recorded a career-high 19 kills en route to Central Michigan claiming a four-set victory over Miami Thursday night to extend its winning streak to six matches.
With the win, the Chippewas improve to 12-6 on the season and 6-1 in the Mid-American Conference, while the Redhawks fall to 5-15 on the year and 0-7 in the MAC.
Dulude came up big when her team needed her the most, slamming home 13 kills over the final two sets – five in the third and eight in the fourth – to swing the momentum back in the Maroon and Gold's favor after they had dropped set two.
The Chippewas were held to a .000 attacking percentage in the second set as they saw Miami run away, 25-16, to even thematch at one set apiece.
After the break, the offense found its form however, recording a .464 hitting percentage in set three and a .381 hitting percentage in set four to keep the season-long six-match winning streak alive.
The Redhawks actually jumped out to a quick 8-6 lead early in the third set, but the Chippewas were able to use a 7-0 run behind the serving of redshirt freshman Haley Barker to claim a 13-8 lead. CMU would extend its lead to seven, 19-12, on an ace from junior Jenna Coates, before Dulude tallied two kills down the stretch, including the set winner, to give CMU a convincing 25-13 victory.
The Chippewas never trailed in the fourth and final set as they jumped out to a 10-8 lead and eventually saw their lead climb to 15-12 on a kill from Dulude that forced a timeout from the Redhawks.
A kill from Miami's Meg Riley pulled the visitors within one, 22-21, but the outside hitter then served the ball into the net and Dulude scored the next two Chippewa points to end the match, 25-22.
Dulude's 19 kills were a match high and gave the Chippewas two players in double figures as Kaitlyn McIntyre finished the night with 14. Kelly Maxwell dished out 40 assists for CMU, while Coates had a match-high 17 digs.
Riley led the Redhawks with 16 kills, while also dishing out 10 assists and picking up eight digs.
The Chippewas' victory keeps them alone atop the MAC West division and sets up a showdown with MAC East and overall league leader Bowling Green Saturday night. The match is set to begin at 7 p.m. and will be the Chippewas' annual "Dig Pink" night. All fans wearing pink will receive half off admission and donations will be taken during the evening to support the Side-Out Foundation.