Aug. 26, 2006
DeKalb, Ill. - If every Northern Illinois volleyball game was played like the opening stanza of Saturday's contest against Saint Louis, the Huskies would be world-beaters.
The Huskies, however, were unable to ride the momentum of their 30-15 first-game victory over the Billikens and fell 30-15, 28-30, 24-30, 30-25 in their second match of the NIU / Comfort Inn and Suites Invitational at Victor E. Court.
"I think we got out-energized today," NIU Head Coach Ray Gooden said. "(Saint Louis) had some momentum and they went with it. We had a real good first game, but we just went on stretches of going up and down, up and down. We even had the lead in game four, but we didn't have the energy to pull it through."
With the victory, Saint Louis remains undefeated at 2-0, while the Huskies drop to 1-1 on the campaign.
Freshman outside hitter Meagan Schoenrock (Sylvania, Ohio) topped the Huskies with a match-high 16 kills, followed by 15 putaways from senior middle blocker Kate McCullagh (Woodstock, Ill.) and 10 kills from junior outside hitter Amy Ward (Sycamore, Ill.).
Saint Louis was able to keep NIU on their toes defensively, as the Billikens recorded 164 total attacks to the Huskies' 132. NIU notched 62 digs to SLU's 44.
"We didn't pass the ball well, so we gave them more opportunites to attack the ball," Gooden said. "They outkilled us virtually every game but the first. They just scored more points at the right times."
The Billikens were led offensively by sophomore middle blocker Lauren Christman (15 kills), followed by 12 kills apiece from freshman middle blocker Sutton Lasater and freshman outside hitters Sammi McCloud and Sally Warning.
NIU will wrap up the tournament against Western Illinois for a 7 p.m. (CST) first serve at Victor E. Court on Saturday night.