MARQUETTE, Mich. – The Northern Michigan volleyball team upset No. 13 ranked Grand Valley State on Saturday (Sept. 10), 3-2, to notch their first home and conference win of the season.
The ‘Cats took the match the match in five sets, 25-19, 21-25, 25-22, 23-25 and 15-10. With the win, NMU improves to 2-4 overall and 1-1 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Conference. GVSU falls to 3-2 and 0-1 in the GLIAC.
NMU opened the match winning a back and forth first set 25-19. The ‘Cats trailed 13-9 early on before scoring seven unanswered points to take the lead and never looked back.
“We opened the match very flat, similar to how we played last night,” head coach Dominic Yoder said. “However, we put a nice rally together and the momentum swung in our favor.”
The Lakers dominated much of the second set, taking over the lead after an early 4-4 tie. GVSU led by as many as eight points before NMU was able to cut the deficit late in the set. The Lakers would go on to win 25-21.
The ‘Cats came back from the break and took the third set 25-22, after once again coming from behind late and taking the set.
The seesaw match saw the Lakers take set four, this time returning the favor and making a comeback of their own. Trailing by three early, GVSU forced a tie six different times before winning the set 25-23
In the fifth and decisive set, junior Kalin Zimmerman served seven straight points to lead the ‘Cats to 15-10 set and match win.
“Our service game came through for us tonight,” Yoder said. “That was a struggle for us last night and has been all season.”
The ‘Cats were led offensively by senior Emma Wolfe, who had a match best 20 kills. Junior Abby Lovell established the attack with 58 assists, while sophomore Lina Lopes controlled the defensive front with 16 digs.
“I can’t say enough about the performance that Emma Wolfe has given us in the last two days,” Yoder said. “Her performance tonight along with that of Lina Lopes is what gave us the momentum to win the match.”
The Lakers were led offensively by Stacy Catalano with 16 kills and Olivia Kohler with 26 assists. Defensively, Sacha Gill led GVSU with 20 digs.
NMU returns to the court on Sunday (Sept. 11), taking on the Ferris State Bulldogs at Vandament Arena. Match time is 2 p.m.
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