Volleyball posts seventh straight victory after going 5-0 in tournament this weekend


Sam Thiel/Winonan

The Winona State volleyball team spread their attack in route to a 3-1 victory against Wisconsin-Parkside on Tuesday.

It marked the first of a six- game road trip for the Warriors. Six Warriors recorded at least three kills, with five of those six having at least five kills.

Seven different Warriors dished out at least two assists during the game even though no Warrior recorded double- digits in the assists department.

WSU lost the first set 25-22, but then rattled off three wins in a row to close out the match.

The Warriors advanced to 3-2 on the season.

Winona State hit .444 and .455 as a team during their second and third set victories, respectively.

Senior Kathy Lohff and junior Katie Froehle led the offensive attack for the Warriors recording ten kills each.

Senior Kate Horihan contributed nine kills and hit an outstanding .692 during the win.

On the defensive end, Maggie Finkel’s 13 digs led the Warriors while juniors Kayla Uhlenhake and Kaley Jacobson handed out seven assists each.

In the opener of the Puma Invite in Rensselaer, Indiana, the Warriors only needed three sets to put away Saginaw Valley State.

The Warriors pulled out close 25-22 and 29-27 victories in the first two sets before breezing by in the final third set with a 25-11 win to put the match away.

Junior Katie Froehle had a double-double with ten kills and 15 digs while freshman Leah Perri chipped in with 13 digs of her own.

Junior Elena Kruesel dished out a team-high 14 assists in the game for WSU.

The Warrior defense proved to be a huge difference maker in the match, holding Saginaw Valley State to a hitting percentage of .000, while recording nine blocks total.

Kathy Lohff recorded five blocks and Kate Horihan had three in the victory.

“Our block was working very well,” senior Kathy Lohff said. “The outsides were setting the blocks properly, making it easy for the middles to close and for the back row to set up behind us.”

In the second game of the triple-header for the Warriors, the result was the same, this time being a 3-1 victory over Illinois-Springfield.

After winning the first set 25-18, UIC came back in the second set, winning 25-12.

The second set didn’t seem to faze the Warriors however, winning the third and fourth sets 25-12 and 25- 18 respectively to close out the match.

Horihan led the offensive onslaught for the Warriors, having ten kills while hitting .714.

Sophomore Paige Garriga chipped in nine kills and hit .429 while Katie Froehle added nine kills as well.

Kruesel led the sharing department with 16 assists while Kayla Uhlenhake added 14 assists as well. L e a h Perri recorded 13 digs in the win.

In the nightcap of their triple-header, Winona State cruised by Edinboro, winning the first set 25-11 before posting identical 25-20 victories in the second and third sets to put the match away.

WSU’s defense was once again phenomenal, as Edinboro hit -.114 during the game.

The Fighting Scots hit -.455 in the first set and couldn’t record a positive hitting percentage during the match.

Although no Warrior had double-digits kills in the game, six different players recorded at least three kills.

Alli Glisch, Garriga and Rachel Polland led the Warriors in the offensive side, netting five kills each.

Glisch hit a team-best .571 hitting percentage as well.

Kruesel led the Warriors in the passing department, recording ten assists while Perri had yet another impressive performance, adding ten digs in the match.

The Warriors also served up nine aces in the game, with Kruesel and Perri compiling three each.

“If you look at our blocking numbers, we are blocking pretty well, and we are creating unforced errors from other teams,” said coach Dave Simon. “We served much better. We eliminated serving errors while still serving tough. Offensively, we ran our middle offense better this weekend than last weekend.”

Winona State finished off a perfect week with consecutive sweeps of Walsh University andSt.Joseph’sonthefinalday of the Puma Invite Saturday in Rensselaer, Ind.

WSU only dropped one set in the entire tournament while going 5-0 in tournament play.

The Warriors improved to 8-2 overall and have won seven consecutive games.

“We learned how to win on the road and we put together a nice winning streak and built some confidence going into the start of conference play,” coach Dave Simon said. “I think that one thing that we improved from last week to this week was that we leveled out our level of play and not play to the level of our competition and I think we did a good job with that this week.”

The Warriors continued to dominate their competition, defeating Walsh 3-0 in the day 2 opener.

WSU quickly put the first match out of hand with a 25- 14 victory in the first set and finished off the Cavaliers by winning the second and third sets 25-20 and 25-14 respectively.

Kate Horihan continued her strong start to the season with 12 kills and hit .714. Paige Garriga hit .545 and recorded eight kills of her own.

Elena Kruesel led the Warriors in the assist department with 19 while Kaley Jacobson added 11.

On the defensive end, Katie Froehle led the effort with 18 digs while Maggie Finkel pitched in 13 of her own.

WSU had 10.5 blocks as a team, led by Kathleen Omelina’s four block assists.

In the final game of the tournament, the Warriors won the first two sets with identical 25-15 victories before disposing the Pumas with a 25- 19 victory in the third set.

Horihan played fantastic once again; recording 11 kills and hit .450. The Warriors also continued to play strongly at the net, compiling nine blocks in the match.

Kathy Lohff recorded seven blocks total while Bekah Saugen added four.

Winona State held St. Joseph’s to just .055 in the hitting percentage department.

“Offensively this weekend we had success utilizing our middle hitters,” said Horihan. “We scored a lot on quick sets in transition.”

Kruesel dished out 19 assists to lead the Warriors while Froehle led the Warriors with 12 digs.

Maggie Finkel contributed 11 digs in the effort, giving both Froehle and Finkel double-digit digs in both games Saturday.

Winona State will start NSIC play on Sept. 14 at Wayne State.

The Warriors play their first home game on Sept. 18 at 7pm versus Upper Iowa.

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