VOLLEYBALL NOW 4-4 IN CONFERENCE PLAY AFTER LOSS AT IDAHO STATE
OCATELLO, Idaho – Idaho State's Makenzie Filer had 14 kills and a .650 hitting percentage to lead the Bengals to a three-set sweep (25-18, 25-23, 25-13) of Sacramento State in a Big Sky Conference volleyball matchup Saturday evening at Reed Gym.
With the loss, Sacramento State dropped to 9-10 overall and 4-4 in the Big Sky. The Hornets have still won four of their last six matches, including yesterday's five-set victory at Weber State.
The win for Idaho State improved the Bengals to 12-7 overall and 6-2 in the league. Sacramento State is 27-9 all-time against the Bengals, but Idaho State has won four straight and six of the last eight meetings between the two teams.
Playing without the services of sophomore outside hitter Sloan Lovett (shoulder), who is Sacramento State's leader in kills, the Hornet offensive attack wasn't necessarily the problem. Idaho State hit .378 as a team, the second highest output by a Sacramento State opponent this season. The Bengals had 49 kills with just 12 errors in 98 attacks. ISU hit .389, .229 and .556, respectively, in sets 1-3.
Offensively, Sacramento State hit .241, including .310 and .286 in the first two sets, but could not stop ISU's attack. The Bengals also had five more aces than the Hornets (7-2). There were just 62 combined digs between the two teams, 33 for the Hornets and 29 for the Bengals.
Sacramento State's only real chance to take a set came in the second when the team went on a 4-0 run to close within, 24-23, of Idaho State's lead. However, a combo block from Whitney Harrington and Alydia Fields-Grimm gave the Bengals the set.
For the Hornets, senior Kayla Beal was impressive, finishing with a match-high 16 kills to go with a season-best .452 hitting percentage. The team co-captain had just two errors in 31 attacks while also finishing with four blocks. Beal was the lone Hornet with double digits in kills as sophomore Lauren Aikels, who started in place of Lovett, had eight kills and freshman Morgan Stanley finished with six kills and seven digs. No other Hornet had more than three kills.
Libero Katie Aprile led Sacramento State with nine digs while both Hannah Hettinga and Lexie Skalbeck had six digs. Middle blocker Courtney Dietrich finished with three blocks. Sacramento State, which entered the week as the Big Sky's leader in aces, finished with just two aces.
For Idaho State, Filer also had a match-high five blocks to go with her 14 kills and .650 hitting percentage. Tressa Lyman added 10 kills while Lori Mendenhall-Lee recorded five kills and a .714 hitting percentage.
Sacramento State is back in action next week as it opens a four-match homestand against Montana and Montana State on Friday and Saturday, respectively. Both matches will begin at 7 p.m.