MSU Wraps Up First Time Through MVC Schedule Saturday at 7 p.m.
Oct. 18, 2013
SPRINGFIELD -- Missouri State faced Missouri Valley Conference newcomer Loyola University Chicago for the first time in league play Friday evening, coming away with a 3-0 (25-18, 25-22, 25-23) victory over the Ramblers at Hammons Student Center to improve to 12-8 overall and 4-4 in MVC matches. Loyola fell to 8-12 and 3-5 in conference play.
Despite the Bears starting the first set with seven kills on their first 10 attempts, it was the team’s first attack error that made for a 9-9 score. Four consecutive Loyola errors followed by an Olivia Brand block and a Carly Thomas kill accounted for a 6-0 MSU run and 16-10 lead. The Ramblers cut the gap to three points on two occasions, the second of which was met by a 5-0 Missouri State run for a 23-15 lead. That was plenty of margin for the Bears as they hit .367 in the set with six kills from senior Christine McCartney.
The second set tilted in Loyola’s favor as the visitors held an 18-13 lead before Missouri State made the comeback. Kaitlin Jaeger hit back-to-back kills and Amber Doolittle served up an ace to pull MSU to 18-17, and the Ramblers followed with two attack errors for a 19-19 score. Carly Thomas aced LUC before Karen Rivatto’s kill made it 21-19. Kayla Walton added consecutive kills for a 24-21 lead before closing the set with another for 25-22.
Rivatto’s kill for a 15-13 MSU lead in the third set marked the first time either team led by as many as two points in the period. Rivatto added two more kills and Doolittle and Walton teamed up for a block for an 18-15 advantage, and the Bears led all the way until Loyola forced yet another tie at 23-23. From there, a service error and an attack error doomed the Ramblers, giving MSU the 25-23 win.
Jaeger led all players with 13 kills, doing so on 23 swings without an error for a .565 hitting percentage. The Bears hit .263 to .169 for Loyola and led 45-38 in total kills.
Ashley Mason’s 16 digs paced four players in double figures. Elise Munroe added 14 digs and two aces, while Thomas had 11 digs and 39 assists.
The Bears host Bradley at 7 p.m. Saturday. The Braves (10-7, 4-4) were swept at Wichita State Friday.