SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. – Behind an impressive .354 hitting percentage and a strong defensive front, the Northern Michigan volleyball swept Lake Superior State 3-0 (25-8, 25-19, 25-12) on Friday night (Sept. 23) in Sault Ste. Marie.
With the win, the ‘Cats improve to 5-5 overall and 4-2 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. The Lakers fall to 2-8 overall and 1-5 in the GLIAC.
Senior left side-hitter Emma Wolfe once again the led the offense spark for the ‘Cats, contributing a match best 14 kills and three digs. Junior setter Abby Lovell established the offensive threat with 24 assists.
NMU took control of the match early, starting the first set on a 14-1 run. Junior libero Kalin Zimmerman served ten straight points, including three service aces during the dominating stretch. Wolfe and sophomore Sami Vierk combined for six kills throughout the set, including the set clincher.
The ‘Cats battled back from an early deficit in the second set, trailing 10-8 early behind a strong service performance by the Lakers Brittany Newberry. The two teams traded points throughout the set before NMU broke the tie with the combination of Wolfe and Lovell to take a 16-15 lead and never looked back.
The third set began the same as the second set with the Lakers taking an early 8-6 lead before the tides changed and the ‘Cats took over. Zimmerman and sophomore Lina Lopes again combined to establish a dominating service game. NMU scored seven straight points while Lopes was serving to hold a commanding 18-9 lead before taking the set and match.
The NMU defensive front had its strongest performance of the year, limiting the Lakers to -.032 hitting percentage. The ‘Cats also had six team blocks and 36 digs.
The ‘Cats are back in action tomorrow afternoon (Sept. 24) as they travel to Northwood to take on the Timberwolves. Match time is 4 p.m.
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