MILWAUKEE – The Mount Mary University volleyball team hosted the Blue Angels Bash today at the Bloechl Center. The second of the two day tournament saw a number of great matches, the Blue Angels (0-7) lost 3-1 in their first match against Iowa Wesleyan, then fell in a hard-fought 3-1 loss to North Central University (4-3) in the tournament's finale.
MMU took on Iowa Wesleyan in match one on the day. The Blue Angels grabbed an early 1-0 lead in the set, but the Tigers answered with an 8-2 run to take the lead. IWU hit nine team kills in their 31 total attacks in the set on their way to the 25-12 set-win.
The Tigers continued to hit accurately in the second set launching eight team kills and only missing with one team error. MMU attacked aggressively throughout the set and came away with nine team kills, but the Tigers took the set 25-11.
In the third set, MMU continued to pressure with their offense. After the Tigers jumped out to a 6-2 lead in the frame, the Blue Angels responded with their backs against the wall and delivered a quick 6-2 rally of their own to tie the score. After the Tigers took a 16-13 lead, the Blue Angels rattled off seven straight points to take a four-point lead. With their most accurate set of the night coming by the way of eight team kills and only three errors; MMU grabbed the set 25-22.
In the fourth set, the Tigers cut their team errors from 11 in the third set to only five in their final frame. The Blue Angels took the early 3-0 lead, but IWU went on a 13-point streak following MMU's early surge. MMU would chip away, but the Tigers went on to take the set 25-10 and the match 3-1.
Adrianna Nester (Sr./Anaheim, Calif.) led MMU's offense in the first match with eight kills on 54 attacks. Her teammate, Brianna Ecker (Fr./Fond du Lac, Wis.), got the offense going with a team leading 18 assists along with her six kills.
In match two of the day for the Blue Angels, MMU fell behind early to North Central University. After the Rams took a 9-1 lead, the Blue Angels rallied but could never cut the deficit by more than eight points. With their most accurate set of the night the Rams took the opening frame 25-11.
The Blue Angels responded in the next frame by forcing their opposition into a game high in team errors. After MMU took the 1-0 lead, they never trailed in the entire set. Although the Rams tied things at 16-16, Lauren Nylund (So./Muskego, Wis.) sparked a rally that gave the Blue Angels a 20-16 lead. MMU went on to take the set at 25-22 and tie the match.
In the third set, the Rams responded by taking an early lead. Although MMU put out that rally at 4-4, NCU came back to stretch things back out to 11-4. The Blue Angels bounced back with six straight points of their own, two of them coming off a Brianna Ecker service ace.
The Tigers then finished the set on a 13-2 run that gave them the match lead. NCU hit 11 team kills on 34 total attacks in the set.
In the final set of the tourney, the Blue Angels put forth their most accurate set of the match. Both teams traded a two-point lead back and forth throughout the set. With Brianna Ecker behind the service line for a majority of the late rally, the Blue Angels took a 20-14. But the Rams came back with an 11-3 rally to reclaim the set lead and the victory late.
Nester led the Blue Angels on offense in the second match as well. Again, Nester landed with eight kills, this time with 40 attacks. She also cleaned up with a team high 14 digs. Ecker led the assist column with 13.
After today's tournament, the Blue Angels will return to action Wed. Sept. 11 at the Reiman Gymnasium. Rival Alverno will play host for the 7:30 match. Live stats will be available at MtMaryAthletics.com.
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