The Mavericks faced a tall task in their previous match, and would provide some excitement early on. Ultimately, the Minnesota State volleyball team lost to top ranked Concordia-St. Paul 3-1 Tuesday night in Mankato.
The Mavericks started the match off hot and created a 6-2 lead. They were able to keep this lead at 19-17. Then, the Golden Bears went on a 6-0 run late in the set, making the score 23-19. Concordia was able to keep the lead and win the first set, 25-20.
The second set was also a competitive one, as both teams were trading off points. They were tied 8-8, then the Mavericks went on a huge 8-0 run making the score 16-8. Concordia battled back, but the Mavericks never gave up the advantage and won the second set, 25-21.
It was a different story, however, in the third set as the Golden Bears dominated. Concordia held the lead at 10-4 when they went on a big 9-0 run of their own, putting the score at 19-4. The Mavericks battled hard, but Concordia proved to be too much and finished the set with a 25-10 score.
The fourth and final set went just like the last one, where Concordia seemed to find their groove and continued to own the court. Concordia ended up winning the final set just like the last one with the score being 25-10.
Concordia-St. Paul had the advantage in every statistical category in this match. They tallied up 52 kills while the Mavericks had 30. The Golden Bears distributed the ball very nicely as they had 50 assists compared to the Mavericks’ 28. Minnesota State struggled to contain Concordia’s servers, as the Golden Bears racked up 10 aces in the match as well.
Senior Krista Hassing led the team in kills with 12. She also led the team in blocks with four and got herself an ace as well. Sophomore Autumn Risch led the team once again with 27 assists. Junior Jackie Jones and Senior Haley Fogarty played well defensively as they both led the match in digs with 11.
After CSP, MNSU is sitting at a 7-4 (1-2 NSIC) record on the season. They will be playing their games this weekend on the road as they travel to Bemidji on Friday, September 23rd to take on Bemidji State University. After that, the Mavericks will head further up north to Crookston to play the University of Minnesota, Crookston on Saturday.
The Bemidji State Beavers have an overall record of 5-6 with a 1-2 conference record so far this season. They are coming off a two-match losing streak to Minnesota Duluth and Minnesota Crookston. They did not win a set in either matches.
BSU is led by senior Jessica Yost who holds a team best 4 kills per set while freshman Shelby Haney leads the team in assists with 5.2 per set. Senior Amanda Tronick is another player to watch in the match as she posts a team high 2.7 digs per set.
According to Assistant Coach Jamie Suapaia, the game plan for Bemidji is to not do anything fancy, maintain composure, and do simple well.
“There’s no secret formula to winning, just doing everything well,” she added.
The last time MNSU squared off with Bemidji State, the Beavers won the match 3-2 on Halloween last year. Minnesota State is leading the all-time series at 33-18. This year’s game will be on Friday and first serve is set to be at 7 p.m.
The Golden Eagles of Crookston will be MNSU’s opponent on day two of their road trip this weekend. Crookston’s current record is 5-6 with a 1-2 conference record. In their last matchup, they were able to sweep Bemidji State.
Minnesota Crookston is led by junior Maggie Perrel who is leading the team in kills per set with 2.9. Senior Sierra Trost leads the Golden Eagles in assists this year with 8.9 per set. Freshman Ali Schueler is their defensive anchor as she leads the team with 4.7 digs per set.
“Crookston is a good serving team. Our defensive specialists need to command the court. We’re fast for their defense, so we just need to contain their servers and we’ll be alright,” said Coach Suapaia.
MNSU and Crookston last faced off in 2015 where the Mavericks swept the match. Mankato leads the all-time series with a record of 12-4. First serve for the Crookston game will be Saturday at 4 p.m.