MARQUETTE, Mich. – Errors proved costly for the No. 25 ranked Northern Michigan volleyball team tonight (Oct. 4), as the visiting No. 4 ranked Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs defeated the ‘Cats 3-0 (25-15, 25-12, 25-16).
The loss is the first for NMU in its last six matches, a stretch in which the ‘Cats went 5-0, sweeping their opponents in straight sets. NMU is now 8-6 overall and remains 6-2 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
The ‘Cats committed 18 attack errors and eight service errors tonight, while hitting for a season low .035.
NMU opened the match in promising fashion, leading 5-2 early. The Bulldogs soon called a timeout and moments later tied the set for the first time. Two more ties later and UMD never looked back, leading by as many as 10 points and cruising to a 25-15 set victory.
UMD took the second set in commanding fashion, never surrendering the lead to the ‘Cats. The Bulldogs led by as many as 12 points at 19-7 before taking the set. Attack errors proved to be especially costly in this set, as the ‘Cats gave free points away to the Bulldogs as UMD took the set 25-12
NMU came out of the break holding an early lead since 9-8 in the first set. The Bulldogs quickly regrouped and took over control of the match after the mid-way point. Four service aces by UMD in the set allowed the Bulldogs to fend off any rally by the ‘Cats, as UMD won the third set and match.
NMU was led offensively by senior left-side hitter Emma Wolfe with five kills and junior setter Abby Lovell with 18 assists.
Defensively, sophomore left-side hitter Lina Lopes led the front with seven digs.
The ‘Cats return to Vandament Arena this weekend for a pair of matches against GLIAC South Division foes. NMU opens the weekend at 7 p.m. Friday (Oct 7) against Ohio Dominican University and concludes the weekend at 4 p.m. on Saturday (Oct. 8) against Tiffin University.
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