LOS ANGELES – The Dixie State volleyball team split its matches for the second day in a row at the CSU-LA invitational.
In the morning game, DSU faced the Molloy Lions out of Rockville Center, NY. The Red Storm continued their momentum and for the second match in a row won in straight sets 25-16, 25-14, 25-19. They could not ride that momentum in the night match however as they fell to Lewis University Flyers out of Romeoville, Ill., in four sets (25-19, 20-25, 25-27, 23-25)
In the first set, DSU sprung out to an early lead, 5-2. The Lions scored four straight to take the lead 6-5. Dixie responded with four straight points of their own behind Talia Brown’s serves. Again the Lions would pull back to tie the game at 13. Dixie responded by scoring eight straight. Most of the points came off Molloy errors. Sidney Brandon closed out the set with a service ace.
In the second set Dixie again went on the attack taking an early 6-2 lead. Consecutive kills from Gianna Kioa and Lindsay Jones got them to 11-3. Molloy was able to pull within four at 16-12. Dixie closed on a 9-2 run with Jones ending the match on a kill.
In the third set Molloy stayed with DSU initially. The Storm scored three straight to pull slightly ahead 9-5 on kills from Jones and Delayne Daniel. They extended the lead to 14-7. Shannon Sorenson, Brette Anderson and Daniel all scored kills during the run. The Lions pulled within four several times, the last at 21-17. Dixie closed out the match with a 4-2 run.
As a team Dixie had .440 hitting percentage and limited Molloy to .047 percentage. Individually Brette Anderson led the team with 10 kills. Jones, Kioa, and Daniel recorded seven kills apiece. Daniel led the team with nine digs. Kailey Frei had 25 assists.
“We got momentum and just rolled through this match,” said Dixie head coach Robyn Felder. “The more the girls play together, the more comfortable they get.”
Dixie dropped the afternoon match to Lewis, but Felder was happy with the performance.
“We played the best volleyball we have played this season,” said Felder. “We don’t like the loss, but the squad continued to get better with each match. We lost to a very good program tonight.”
Dixie took the first set. Neither team could break away initially but Dixie went on a 8-0 run late to move the score to 22-15. Again it was Brandon on serve for the run but more impressively the Red Storm had six kills, three from Daniel. The Flyers fought back to within two, 22-20, before Frei served out the match.
In the second set the Flyers jumped out to a 9-4 advantage. Dixie responded with a 5-0 run to tie the game. Lewis extended the lead to five again on an 8-3 run. The lead was eight when Lewis reached game point. Dixie scored four more to get to 20 before the Flyers got to 25.
The last two sets were the most hotly contested. “In both matches we were tied at 23,” said Felder. “We had chances to win but Lewis was able to finish both sets.”
Set three was neck and neck the entire time. Neither team could get more than a three-point lead, and those leads were short-lived. Dixie actually took a 25-24 lead but had a critical service error. Lewis then served out to get the set.
In set four Lewis jumped out to a six-point lead 20-14. Consecutive kills by Brandon and three kills from Daniel helped Dixie fight back to the lead 21-20. Again the lead went back and forth and Dixie tied the Flyers at 23 on a Lewis service error. Lewis got a kill and a service ace for the final two points of the match.
For the match both teams had 225 hitting percentages. The Red Storm had 56 kills and 71 digs as a team. Individually Daniel led the team with 18 kills. Jones had 12 kills. Double-figure digs were recorded by Alex Anderson (17), Brown (16), Brandon (13) and Daniel (10). Frei had 41 asssists.
The Red Storm move to 2-2 on their opening weekend of the season. They continue play on the road at the GNAC/PACWEST Crossover tournament in Ellensburg, Washington on Thursday, September 10. They begin with an early afternoon match against Western Washington University at 12:30 p.m. Pacific Time.
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