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SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Freshman Morgan Stanley led all players with 17 kills, freshman Kendall LaVine had nine kills and a match-best .692 hitting percentage, and sophomore Sloan Lovett added 16 kills to help Sacramento State to a 3-1 victory (25-22, 23-25, 25-9, 25-20) over Central Connecticut in the second round of the Sacramento State Volleyball Invitational.
With the victory, the Hornets (5-1) improved to 1-1 at the two-day tournament and will play their final match tonight at 7 p.m. against Cal Poly. Other scores from today included Cal Poly beating San Jose State, 3-1, and Central Connecticut sweeping San Jose State, 3-0.
Both San Jose State and Central Connecticut finish the tournament with 1-2 records, and Cal Poly will enter tonight's match with a 2-0 mark. The winner of tonight's contest will win the tournament title. An all-tournament team will be announced at the conclusion.
Sacramento State had its offense rolling all afternoon, finishing with a .358 hitting percentage. In fact, the Hornets hit at least .297 in all four sets. LaVine (.692), Lovett (.448) and rightside hitter Kayla Beal 11 kills, .346) all hit for high percentages, and Sacramento State had big advantages over the Blue Devils in kills (60-45), hitting percentage (.358-.131) and digs (54-44).
LaVine's nine kills came without an error in 13 attacks, and Lovett (3) and Beal (2) combined for just five errors in 55 attempts.
Hornet libero Katie Aprile had 21 of the team's 54 digs, and was the only player in the match with better than 11 digs. Five different Sacramento State players had at least two blocks, including Chelcy Motes (4), LaVine (3), setter Hannah Hettinga (3), Beal (3) and Lovett (2).
In the Hornets' 25-9 win in the third set, Central Connecticut hit for a negative percentage, accumulating just four kills during the entire frame with eight attack errors.
Sacramento State closed the third set on a 10-0 run, and finished the fourth set on a 12-6 spurt.
NOTES -- At 5-1, the Hornets are off to their best start after six matches since the 2004 squad had the same record…the team is seeking its first Sacramento State Invitational championship since the 2010 season…this is the 11th straight year the program has hosted the two-day event.