Site: Fayetteville, Ark. (Barnhill Arena)
Event: Arkansas Invitational (Day 1)
Score: Michigan 3, Stephen F. Austin 1 (25-14, 25-17, 22-25, 25-8)
Records: U-M (1-0), SFA (0-1)
Next U-M Event: Saturday, Aug. 30 -- vs. Tennessee State - Arkansas Invitational (Fayetteville, Ark.), 1 p.m. CDT
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- For the ninth straight season, the University of Michigan volleyball team picked up a win in its lidlifter, defeating Stephen F. Austin in four sets in match one of the Arkansas Invitational Friday afternoon (Aug. 29) at Barnhill Arena. Set scores were 25-14, 25-17, 22-25 and 25-8.
Sophomore Abby Cole (Grand Haven, Mich./Grand Haven) led Michigan in kills, garnering a career-high 19 to go along with a .593 hitting percentage. She also assisted on four of Michigan's 10 team blocks. Freshman Katherine Mahlke (Downers Grove, Ill./Downers Grove North), one of three U-M rookies to see their first career action, had a double-double with 12 kills and 13 digs. She also had four blocks. Freshman Adeja Lambert (Rockford, Ill./Keith Country Day) was Michigan's third player in double figures in kills as she had 11 on the night. Junior Carly Warner (Naperville, Ill./St. Francis) had a career high 52 assists to go along with eight digs in her second career start. Junior Tiffany Morales (Hermosa Beach, Calif./Redondo Union) led three players in double figures in digs with 17 and classmate Krystalyn Goode (River Hills, Wis./Nicolet) added six blocks with nine terminations.
The Wolverines hit .417 in the first set of the season, never looking back from an early 6-2 advantage after freshman Caroline Knop's (Pasadena, Calif./LaSalle) kill. Stephen F. Austin's service error put the Maize and Blue on top 10-3 and Lambert's kill made the score 11-5. Michigan went up 16-8 on back-to-back blocks from Cole and Lambert's kill at 22-14 forced the Lady Jacks to call timeout. Warner served a pair of aces at 23-14, and Goode teamed with Lambert for a block to take set one.
There were eight ties early in the second set, but the Wolverines broke through late to head to the locker room up a pair of sets. Michigan took its first lead at 15-14 on a Stephen F. Austin bad set. Goode and Lambert combined on a block for a two-point lead and Goode's termination made it 17-14. Mahlke's kill gave the Maize and Blue a 22-16 lead and her termination ended the second set in U-M's favor. Michigan hit .342 in that set as Lambert led the attack with five kills.
The Wolverines fell behind to open the third set, came back to take a late lead, but eventually fell to the Lady Jacks 25-22. Michigan called a timeout after an SFA kill at 10-6. Cole's kill cut the lead to 12-7 and a Goode solo block made it 15-11. The Wolverines went on a 7-0 run, led by four Cole terminations, to take an 18-16 lead, but the Lady Jacks answered with a 6-2 run of their own. Warner's kill cut SFA's lead to 23-22 but the Lady Jacks scored the final two points of the set, sending the match to set four.
Michigan dominated the fourth set, hitting .406 compared to -.030 for SFA, to win 25-8 and take the match. Cole and Mahlke combined for eight of U-M's first 10 points as the Maize and Blue jumped out to a 10-1 lead. A Cole service ace put U-M up 18-4 and Morales' service ace gave the Wolverines a commanding 21-8 advantage. Michigan closed the match on a Knop termination, giving Michigan a 10th straight win in a season opener.
The Wolverines ended the match with a .344 hitting percentage and a 65-42 dig advantage. Michigan also had eight service aces on the night.
Michigan continues play in the Arkansas Invitational Saturday afternoon (Aug. 30) with a 1 p.m. match against Tennessee State.
Contact: Kent Reichert
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