Volleyball Falls to Drake, Downs North Dakota in Five Set Comeback

GREEN BAY, Wis. – SIUE volleyball was back in action on Friday as the Cougars fell to Drake in three sets before taking victory over North Dakota in a five-set comeback.

Following the split, SIUE volleyball moves to 5-5 on its 2022 campaign.

Match 1: SIUE 0, DRAKE 3

In the first set, the Bulldogs jumped to an early 10-5 lead over the Cougars, but SIUE responded on two kills from Sydney Hummert to cut the deficit to three points. Drake followed with a 9-2 run to take a 10-point lead. The Bulldogs would win the opening set 25-12, taking advantage of the Cougars’ 10 attack errors and -.214 hitting percentage.

Trailing one set to Drake, SIUE found itself in another hole early behind 17-6. The Cougars would answer the deficit with a 9-1 run to put the match within three points at 18-15. The two would trade points back and forth until the Cougars put the set within one at 24-23, but Drake prevailed to take the set, 25-23.

Trailing 10-5 in the third set, SIUE fought back to tie the set at 16 apiece. However, the Bulldogs pulled away with a 9-2 run to end the set and take victory over the Cougars.

Sydney Hummert finished the match with a team-high 13 kills and 10 digs. Ainsley Ranstead picked up seven kills and recorded the Cougars’ lone ace in the match, while Caroline Waite dished out 18 assists. Priscilla Jones, Jessica Vineyard spirit Jenna Taphorn each recorded two kills each in the loss.

Game 2: SIUE 3, North Dakota 2

SIUE found itself down two sets to none (24-26, 21-25) against North Dakota heading into the third set. Trailing 6-4, SIUE used a 3-0 run to take the lead over the Fighting Hawks. The Cougars and North Dakota traded points until the set was tied at 16, until SIUE used a 5-0 run to take a 21-16 advantage. The Cougars would hold the lead to take the set, 25-18.

SIUE kept their foot on the gas in the fourth, taking an early 5-0 advantage with the help of two kills from Ainsley Ranstead. With the Cougars up 9-7, SIUE extended their lead with a 6-0 run. The Fighting Hawks responded with an 11-4 run of their own to take a 20-19 advantage, but SIUE regrouped to tie the set at 21 following a kill by Priscilla Jones. The two dealt points back and forth to tie the set at 25, but SIUE fought hard to take the fourth frame, 29-27.

Down 4-3 in the final set, the Cougars used a 10-2 run to regain a 13-6 lead over North Dakota. The Fighting Hawks began to make a comeback, but SIUE closed out the set 15-12 to take victory in the match.

Sydney Hummert finished the match with a season-high 18 kills on 37 attacks with five errors, good for a .351 clip. Savannah Christian also tallied eight kills on 17 attacks with one error for a team-leading .412 hitting percentage. Ainsley Ranstead led the Cougars with a season-high four blocks and three service aces, while Caroline Waite dealt 30 assists. On defense, Nicole Kijowski led SIUE with 13 digs.

Up Next: SIUE will close out the Green Bay Invitational and its nonconference schedule Saturday against host Green Bay at 1:00 pm

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