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Concordia Pulls Away in Fourth Set to Top Volleyball

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ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Marygrove volleyball and the Concordia Cardinals met in Ann Arbor, Mich. on Wednesday (Sept. 23) for the second time in five days, this match with WHAC implications on the line as the hosts squeaked by the Mustangs in four sets for a 3-1 win (21-25, 25-18, 22-25 and 23-25). The Mustangs dropped a five-set thriller to the Cardinals on Friday (Sept. 18) in Ann Arbor and were points away from forcing a fifth and deciding frame in Wednesday’s conference match.

The Cardinals improve to 14-8 overall and 3-3 WHAC play with the four-set win over the Mustangs. Fourth-year head coach Jamie Baker and the Mustangs fall to 2-12 overall and 0-6 in league action after Wednesday’s setback.

For the second time in five days, the Mustangs and Cardinals engaged in a back-and-forth contest between conference teams. Much like Friday, the teams split the first two sets with Concordia winning the third frame, placing the Green and Gold in a 2-1 hole. Facing a must-win situation in set four, the Mustangs owned narrow 20-19 and had a fifth set in their sight.

A 6-3 Cardinal run dashed any hope of a fifth set, sending the Mustangs to defeat in four frames.

Autumn VanKirk led a diverse Cardinal attack with 14 kills. In all, four Cardinals recorded 13 or more kills on the night while Julia Szuba anchored the back-row effort with 27 digs.

The Mustangs were led once again by senior Rachel Staudt (Novi, Mich./Lawrence Tech) with 14 kills (one error) on 28 total attacks. Staudt’s 14-to-1, kill-to-error ratio was a continuation of a solid season on a night where the senior worked her way to a team-best .464 hitting percentage.

Brenna Donnelly (Yale, Mich./Mott Community College) put together another fine outing for the Green and Gold with 10 kills on 29 attacks while Ashley Murphy (Southfield, Mich./Clarenceville High School) checked in with eight kills of her own.

Skylar Zeigler (Canton, Mich./Belleville High School) followed next with three kills while Alixandria Pappas (St. Clair Shores, Mich./Lakeview High School) had two kills and a team-high four block assists.

Setter Hayley Jury (Plymouth, Mich./Ladywood High School) quarterbacked the Green and Gold’s offense with 25 assists – a match high – while the Amber’s, Amber Staudt and Amber Kelly, chimed in with 18 and 13 digs, respectively in the setback.

NOTEWORTHY: Current Concorida head coach Karen Graves was the Mustangs first coach in program history, leading the team to a 23-51 record during her two seasons at the helm. Graves was followed by Michael Love, who coached the team for one season (2011), and current head coach, Jamie Baker, who is currently in her fourth season on the Mustangs’ sideline.

UP NEXT: The Mustangs are home twice this weekend in rare fashion. Friday’s (Sept. 25) home match against Davenport will be played at Madonna University at 7 p.m. due to gym availability issues at the University of Detroit Jesuit High School. On Saturday (Sept. 26), NAIA No. 15 Madonna visits Jesuit High School for a 1 p.m. match. Friday’s match will feature live stats only while Saturday’s contest will be accompanied by live video coverage on the Mustang Sports Network at marygrovemustangs.com/live.

WOMEN’S VOLLEYBALL CONTACT: Tim Johnston | [email protected]/* */ | @tjohnston56
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Category: Women's Volleyball

Today - 16 November 2018