September 13, 2007

Northern Colorado Volleyball Opens Conference Season With 3-0 Win Over Montana

Sept. 13, 2007

Box Score |  Photo Gallery 

GREELEY, Colo.- The University of Northern Colorado's volleyball team (3-8, 1-0 Big Sky) behind a match-high 18 kills from senior Dulcie Stone opened the conference with a three-game victory (30-21, 33-31, 30-27) over Montana (4-7, 0-1 Big Sky) on Thursday, Sept. 13 at Butler-Hancock. This was the second consecutive Bears win over the Grizzlies as the team also defeated Montana in the first round of the 2006 Big Sky Volleyball Championships.

Besides a match-high 18 kills (18-9-47) Stone also tallied nine digs and a block for 19.5 points. Sophomore Kenzie Shreeve contributed 11 kills, three digs and three blocks. Freshman Lindsey McDaniel, in her first match as the starting setter, totaled a career-high 41 assists, seven digs and two blocks. Sophomore Taylor Smith had a team best four blocks. Senior Abby Mayne tallied a match-high 20 digs. It was the fifth time this season that Mayne has reached the 20-dig mark in a match.

For the match the Bears outhit the Grizzlies .138 (47-29-130) to .048 (33-27-126). NC also totaled five service aces to the three for Montana.

The first game had four tied scores and three lead changes before NC took control for good on a Shreeve blast at 6-5. Three straight Grizzlies attack error extended the Bears advantage to five. The lead hit seven on sophomore Allison Raguse's put down. NC would continue to coast to 30-21 game one victory.

The second game was also competitive with 12 tied scores and six lead changes. The Bears at one point held a four-point advantage, 27-23, due in part to a 4-0 run keyed by an Ashley Lichtenberg kill. Montana would storm back though with their own 6-0 rally. Now facing a game-point the Bears rallied and tied the game up at 29 on back-to-back Stone kills. An attack error gave the Grizzlies a one-point advantage but Stone came to the rescue again and tied the game at 30 with a big kill. After a service ace and service error on consecutive plays, Stone untied the score for good with a kill. A Smith and Shreeve tandem block gave Northern Colorado a 33-31 game two win.

The Bears, with momentum clearly on their side, started strong in the third stanza jumping out to a 10-6 lead on Stone's kill. The Bears continued to hold a three to four-point lead until the Grizzlies finally caught up at 17 on Lauren Gustafson's kill. After tied scores at 22 and 26, back-to-back Grizzlies attack error allowed the Bears the take control and finish the match off with a 30-27 victory.

Freshman Amy Roberts led Montana with her double-double performance of 13 kills and 10 digs.

Northern Colorado will continue the homestand with a conference match against Montana State on Saturday, Sept. 15 at Butler-Hancock at 7 p.m.