The Seattle University volleyball team enjoyed a solid defensive night, but its offense was inconsistent, and the University of Idaho took advantage as the Vandals defeated the Redhawks, 3-1 (25-15, 19-25, 25-18, 25-16) Friday night in a Western Athletic Conference match at Memorial Gym.
Two service aces by Kerry Lane (Tucson, Ariz.) helped Seattle U take an early three-point lead in the first set, but Idaho would put together a 12-1 scoring run, led by Alyssa Schultz with three kills and two blocks, to go ahead, 15-7. Another 6-1 Vandal scoring run gave the home team a 23-11 advantage, but the Redhawks fought back, scoring the next four points before a kill by Ashley Christman and a Seattle U attack error clinched the opening set for Idaho.
The second set started with a block by Matea Mamic (Split, Croatia) and Stephanie Stoll (Bellevue, Wash.), followed by kills from Mamic and Alec Goodrie (Springfield, Ore.), to give Seattle U the first four points of the set. Down 10-6, Idaho scored four unanswered points to tie the set, but the Redhawks responded with five straight points of their own, including two kills from Sarah Jaeckel (Littleton, Colo.), to reestablish a five-point lead at 15-10. The margin would stay consistent the rest of the way, with Jaeckel clinching the set with a kill to tie the match.
Idaho (15-10, 8-5 WAC) scored six straight points early in the third set, starting with a kill and a solo block from Christman. The Redhawks scored the next three points, but the Vandals put together a 7-1 scoring run, led by two kills from Meredith Coba, to pull out to a 14-7 lead. Down 19-11, the Redhawks scored five straight points thanks to three blocks, two by the combination of Goodrie and Allison Farley (Happy Valley, Ore.), but Idaho closed out the third set on a 6-2 run to take a 2-1 lead in the match.
The Vandals went on an 8-1 scoring run early in the fourth set to pull ahead, 11-4, thanks in part to three kills by Jessica Hastriter. Farley notched a kill and two service aces to close the Redhawk deficit to 11-8, and Seattle U traded points with Idaho to stay within striking distance. However, the home team closed out the set and the match with an 8-2 scoring run, with Hastriter earning three kills down the final stretch.
“We served well and blocked better than we have been, but we were inconsistent with our offense,” Seattle U head coach James Finley said. “We need to use this final road trip next weekend to build some momentum heading into the conference tournament.”
Stoll finished with nine kills, a .364 hitting percentage, and four block assists, while Jaeckel also had nine kills to go along with nine digs. Lane notched her third double-double of the season with 36 assists and 10 digs, plus she earned three service aces, as did Farley to go along with seven kills and five total blocks. Mamic collected seven kills, five digs, and four total blocks, Goodrie added six kills and five block assists, and Lani Beadle (Seattle, Wash.) led all players with 18 digs.
Christman finished with 18 kills, 13 digs, and four block assists to lead the Vandals, with Hastriter collecting 12 kills in the match. Coba dished out 40 assists, and four different Idaho players reached double figures in digs, led by Katelyn Peterson and Jenna Ellis with 14 digs apiece.
Seattle University (11-18, 8-6 WAC) finishes the regular season next weekend with matches at Kansas City Thursday, Nov. 14, and at Chicago State Saturday, Nov. 16, both at 7 p.m. local time (5 p.m. Pacific time). The Redhawks will then play in the WAC Tournament in Phoenix, Ariz., beginning with a first-round contest Monday, Nov. 25.