MARQUETTE, Mich. – In its first home game of the weekend, the Northern Michigan University volleyball team defeated Saginaw Valley State in four sets on Friday (Nov. 9) from Vandament Arena in a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference match.
“Tonight’s win was important for us,” stated NMU coach Dominic Yoder. “We want to continue a post season push and we’re now one win away from our goal of 20.”
The Wildcats (11-6, 19-11 GLIAC), took the first set, 25-17 before SVSU came from behind to take set two, 26-24. However, NMU was able to answer by taking the final two sets (25-18 and 27-15). In all sets combined, there were 26 tied scores and 18 lead changes.
Freshman Lisa Studnicka led the ‘Cats in kills with 19 while juniors Sarah Hamilton and Kalli Herron each added 12. NMU finished the game with 61 kills for an attack percentage of .161. Senior Kalin Zimmerman had 24 digs on the night, with junior Kellisha Harley not far behind with 20 and junior Lina Lopes tallying 17. Harley finished the game with 44 assists to setup the offense.
Senior Jasmine Calhoun dominated the ball defensively with nine block assists and two solo blocks. Herron added six block assists. The ‘Cats finished with 16 team blocks.
“Blocking was key for us tonight,” Yoder added. “We had a season-high 17 blocks early in the season, and we’ve been working hard to get back that.”
For the Cardinals, Lyndsay Reynolds recorded 16 kills and Julia Thomas added 10 to add to the Cardinals 39 team kills for an attack percentage of .043. Laurel Mattson led in digs with 16. Sam Breault tallied 32 assists on the evening, along with 15 digs. SVSU finished with nine team blocks while Kate Czopek contributed five of them.
The ‘Cats close out the season at home on Saturday (Nov. 10) in a GLIAC match against U.P. rival Lake Superior State at 4 p.m. Seniors Kalin Zimmerman, Andree Ring, Jasmine Calhoun and Bailey Franklin will play in their final match in the Green and Gold.
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