Oct. 30, 2004

NAMPA, Idaho - While there is still plenty to play for, Seattle University's chances of repeating as NCAA Division II Pacific Regional participants took a hit on Saturday in a 30-26, 32-30, 22-30, 32-30 loss to Northwest Nazarene at the Johnson Sports Center in Nampa, Idaho.

Despite having 16 more kills than the Crusaders, as well as 11 aces and 12.0 team blocks, the Redhawks (12-10, 10-4 GNAC) weren't able to overcome some solid defense from NNU (13-8, 8-6 GNAC). The Crusaders recorded 108 team digs with three players having 25 or more digs in the win.

The Redhawks had outstanding nights out of Sarah Sommerman (Kent, Wash./Kentridge HS) and Lizzy Safranski (Portland, Ore./St. Mary's Academy). Sommerman led all hitters with 26 kills to equal a season high, and she hit .290 with just eight errors. Safranski not only had a season-high 20 kills, she also hit .315 with just three errors, while also recording two aces, 17 digs, four block solos and four block assists.

Safranski's 20 kills is tied for the third-best in her career, and the most since 2002.

Freshman Nikole Thompson (Marysville, Wash./Marysville-Pilchuck HS) also reached double-digits in kills for the fourth time in her young career with 12. Erika Brunson (Portland, Ore./Central Catholic HS) led all players with 54 assists while defensive guru Maggie Safranski (Portland, Ore./St. Mary's Academy) led the Redhawks with 21 digs.

But it was a balanced effort from Northwest Nazarene that put the Crusaders over the top. Four players reached double-digits in kills with Lindsay Miller leading the way with 18, along with Lilly Carreon's 13 and 10 apiece from Chelsea Lewis and Allison James. Carreon had a perfect night on the attack, hitting .433 with 13 kills and no errors in 30 attempts.

Defensively, James and Kristy Wigren each had 27 digs while Miller had 25.

Seattle will look to keep its postseason hopes alive next Thursday when the Redhawks travel to St. Martin's at 7 p.m.

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