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Volleyball Splits First Two Matches With Young Lineup
Posted: Friday, August 31, 2007
Kim Wudi picked up her first win as the first-year UW-Eau Claire volleyball coach but it took until the team's second match to do so as the Blugolds served up the new season in their own Labor Day Classic in the McPhee Phy Ed Center here Friday.
The Blugolds dropped a 3-0 decision to Gustavus Adolphus (MN) in their first match but came back to beat Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference rival UW-River Falls, 3-0, in the second match.
Gustavus also beat UW-Stout, 3-0, to remain as one of two unbeatens in the six-team classic. Hamline University also is 2-0 after beating River Falls and Minnesota-Morris.
The competition continues at 10 a.m. Saturday when the Blugolds face Morris and Stout takes on Hamline. At noon, Stout and River Falls square off as do Gustavus and Morris. In the final round of matches at 2 p.m., Eau Claire meets Hamline and River Falls battles Gustavus.
Wudi routinely rotated 10 players throughout the first match, sending six players into their first extended combat as Blugolds. She said that the Blugolds' inexperience "showed through." While Gustavus hit .188 for the match, the Blugolds hit just .118. They also had 11 service errors with just two service aces and six serve reception errors. In addition, the team had three blocking errors and only three blocks. They also had three ball-handling errors.
Senior Nikki Peterson (North St. Paul, MN) led the team in kills with nine while Abby Freiborg (Jr.-Sacred Heart, MN/Renville West) had eight. Emily Haese (Jr.-Mishicot) was tops in assists with 29. Freiborg also led the team in digs with 12.
Gustavus posted 30-24, 30-23 and 32-30 game scores to claim the match. The Gusties then bested Stout, 30-16, 30-25, 30-22.
The Blugolds came back with 30-25, 30-22 and 30-22 wins over River Falls. Wudi was pleased with the effort of Peterson who was moved from the left side to the right side during the course of the match. She hit .391 against Gustavus and .421 with 11 kills against River Falls. Senior Lissa Martinez (Vadnais Heights, MN/White Bear Lake) led the team with 16 kills against River Falls and drew praise from Wudi for her performance. Also getting 11 kills in the RF match was junior Katie Fox (Chippewa Falls/Chi-Hi).
Haese, who will miss Saturday's matches because of her sister's wedding, had 45 sets in the River Falls match as the Blugolds totaled 53 kills, 19 more than their first match. Senior Heather Harnell (Minnetonka, MN) had a team-high 18 digs. The Blugolds had 58 digs against River Falls compared to just 45 in their first match against Gustavus.
The Blugolds had 11 service aces to River Falls' one. Sophomore Lindsey Smith (Maple Lake, MN) came up with five herself off a jump serve.
Wudi was encouraged by the development of several other players including captain Jenna Weber (Jr.-Antigo) and sophomore Cary Rasmussen (Sparta).
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