EAST LANSING, Mich. – Making an immediate impact after missing the last two weekends, Alondra Vazquez registered a match-high 25 kills to lead the University of Evansville volleyball team to a 3-1 victory over Chicago State in Friday’s Green & White Classic contest inside the Breslin Center.
Vazquez hit an impressive .364 in her return while adding 14 digs and four assists. Giulia Cardona added 18 kills and a match-best 18 digs. Kora Ruff set a new career mark with 47 assists while Madisyn Steele set a career mark with seven block assists. Maddie Hawkins also had a notable performance, tallying her top mark of nine digs.
Set 1 – UE 25, CSU 20
Evansville made a late run to pick up the win in the opening frame. It was the Cougars who grabbed the early 4-2 advantage before extending that lead to 9-5. The Aces chipped away at the lead before Alondra Vazquez took matters into her own hands. Three kills in a row highlighted a 7-2 run that put UE up 12-11. Kora Ruff capped off the rally with an ace.
Continuing its run, the Aces saw their lead grow to three points (17-14), but Chicago State responded to tie it up at 19-19. The pivotal sequence came when Madisyn Steele registered a kill to begin a 4-0 stretch that led to a 25-20 UE win.
Set 2 – CSU 25, UE 13
Things went the Cougars way in the second game from the outset. After going up by a score of 8-3, CSU continued to roll on their way to a 14-5 lead. Two in a row by the Aces cut the deficit to seven points (15-8), but the Cougars would pull away for the 25-13 decision to tie the match.
Set 3 – UE 25, CSU 20
Out of the gate, it was the Purple Aces jumping out to a 4-1 lead with Vazquez and Kate Tsironis recording kills. After the Cougars cut the lead to 5-4, UE countered with four in a row to push the lead to 9-4. Things continued to go the Aces way as another ace from Ruff was followed by a Vazquez kill to make it an 18-11 game.
Chicago State closed the gap in the final moments, but it was another kill from Vazquez that was the clincher in a 25-20 win that gave UE a 2-1 match lead.
Set 4 – UE 25, CSU 20
In a repeat of the third set, Evansville scooted out to a 4-1 advantage with three Vazquez kills anchoring the run. UE’s lead stood at 13-10 when Chicago State rallied with a 5-1 run to go in front by a 15-14 score. The Aces jumped back in front at 17-16 and would not let the Cougars take another lead.
The stellar outing by Vazquez continued when her 25th kill of the afternoon pushed the lead back to 22-19. Giulia Cardona put the finishing touches on the win, recording a kill to cement a 25-20 nod that gave Evansville a 3-1 match victory.
On Saturday, the Aces take on Oakland and Michigan State.