DSU spikers extend win streak to 9 games with win over Point Loma

File photo from Dixie State University vs. Point Loma University, Volleyball, St. George, Utah, Nov. 7th, 2015, | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — The Dixie State volleyball team swept Point Loma Nazarene University in straight sets Saturday, 25-20, 25-21, 27-25.

The Sea Lions came into the match in third place, two games back of the Storm.

Lindsey Jones (3) for Dixie State, Dixie State University vs. Point Loma University, Volleyball, St. George, Utah, Nov. 7th, 2015, | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News
Lindsey Jones (3) for Dixie State, Dixie State University vs. Point Loma University, Volleyball, St. George, Utah, Nov. 7th, 2015, | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News

“They beat us in straight sets earlier in the year at their place,” said Dixie outside hitter Delayne Daniel. “This was a statement game for us. We did not want to just win. We wanted to take them in straight sets.”

Both teams had come into the game with eight-game winning streaks. DSU is now riding a nine-game winning streak, also having won 13 of their last 14 matches.

In the first set, both teams played even to start the game but the Storm was looking at a 16-15 deficit after a sideout by PLNU. Dixie State then rattled an 11-5 run to close out the set. Daniel, outside hitter Taylor Duryea and middle blocker Lindsay Jones each recorded two kills during the run.

In the second set, the two teams again played even. Eventually the Sea Lions pulled slightly ahead, first at 15-12, then their biggest lead at 19-15. Dixie State coach Robyn Felder called a timeout.

“I told them to remember their goal. We wanted to beat them in straight sets,” said Felder. “They collected themselves and went out determined.”

That determination led to Dixie closing out the set on a 10-2 run. During the run, Daniel recorded another four kills. Makenzi Bird-Murphey closed out the set with a kill down the middle.

“I told (Delayne) Daniel before the match that she was a superstar,” said Felder. “And that we needed her to play like a superstar today. She did that and more.”

Dixie States bench celebrates a point, Dixie State University vs. Point Loma University, Volleyball, St. George, Utah, Nov. 7th, 2015, | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News
Dixie States bench celebrates a point, Dixie State University vs. Point Loma University, Volleyball, St. George, Utah, Nov. 7th, 2015, | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News

The final set would again be close. The Storm opened up an 11-7 lead on another kill from Daniel. FPU called timeout and responded with a 13-6 run to go up 20-17. Coach Felder called a timeout and the DSU came back quickly knotting the score at 21 then at 22. Two consecutive kills by Daniel and Jones put the Storm at match point. PLNU responded with three straight points of its own to put Dixie State in danger of losing the set. But the Storm rallied back, forcing two attack errors by the Sea Lions. Jones finished the visitors off with a kill.

Daniel finished with a match-high 16 kills and hit .361 for the match, while Duryea added 10 kills, and Bird-Murphey had eight kills. Kailey Frei had a double-double with 39 assists and 10 digs.

The Sea Lions fall to 16-9 overall and to fourth place in the PacWest at 10-6. The Storm move to 16-8 overall and 12-3 to stay atop the PacWest with a two-game advantage over BYU-Hawaii and Cal Baptist.

DSU will now go on the road for its annual Hawaii trip where they will face UH-Hilo, BYU-Hawaii and Chaminade, the only team to beat the Storm on their home court.

“We are in the middle of a very challenging stretch,” said Felder. “But our girls have responded.”

The Storm will play three matches in three nights starting with a 7:30 p.m. match against BYU-Hawaii on Thursday night.

“The girls are in a really good place mentally,” Felder added. “They were able to rebound after playing poorly for a few points and were able to get their feet back under them. We are playing with confidence right now and learning to trust each other. We are in a good place for our last four [PacWest] games.”

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2015, all rights reserved.

 

 

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