SEATTLE – Seattle University volleyball powered its way to a 3-0 sweep of Chicago State Saturday afternoon in Seattle to open Western Athletic Conference play.
The Redhawks (8-6, 1-0 WAC) lead the majority of the way through the first two sets, winning 25-19 and 25-16, before staving off a furious Cougar (7-10, 1-1 WAC) rally late in the third. Seattle U would hang on for a 27-25 win and its fifth sweep of the season.
"Our defense was really phenomenal today and really dictated the match," said Head Coach James Finley. "We also got great performances from Mahra McLeod and Sofia Sanchez, who generated tons of offense and took pressure off of our middles."
McLeod and Sanchez paced the Redhawks with 13 kills per set, while also each hitting better than .320 for the match. In the middle, Maja Stojanovic and Julia Queiroz collected six kills apiece, while Stojanovic added six blocks as well.
The Redhawks never trailed in the first set and used a 5-0 run midway through to turn a 12-10 lead into a 17-10 advantage. They would lead by as many as eight points before clinching the 25-19 set win.
In similar form, a 6-0 run midway through the second set opened up a 16-9 advantage. The Cougars could not recover as Seattle U went on to win, 25-16.
The Redhawks could not pull away in the third set, however, and a Cougar run midway through made things interesting. With Seattle U leading 13-9, CSU put together a 6-0 run of its own to take a 15-13 lead. The teams would go back-and-forth for the remainder of the set before a Rachel Stark kill, followed by an ace on match point clinched the victory for the Redhawks.
Seattle U heads back out on the road next week, traveling to face WAC rivals New Mexico State and UTRG on Sept. 27 and Sept. 29, respectively.