Alicia Runge had 18 kills and season-best seven digs while hitting .382 to lead the Creighton Volleyball team to a 3-1 win over Mid-American Conference preseason favorite Central Michigan. Scores of the match in favor of Creighton was 25-17, 22-25, 26-24, 25-23.
Creighton evened its record to 5-5 on the season after a second consecutive 2-1 weekend. CMU, which went 1-2 in the event, is now 4-5 on the season and winless in two tries against Missouri Valley Conference competition this fall.
“I thought we played a great match vs. Marquette last night and played crisp the entire time,” said Creighton head coach Kirsten Bernthal Booth. “Against both Central Michigan and Toledo we did great things but were not as consistent as we needed to be.”
Creighton hit .357 in the opening set while rolling to a 25-17 victory. Creighton broke free from a 14-14 deadlock with a 6-1 run to go ahead 20-15. The Jays would close out the set with consecutive blocks by Laurel Sanford. Creghton held CMU to -.059 hitting, with just seven kills and nine errors in 34 swings.
Central Michigan tied the second set, scoring the final three points to take a 25-22 decision. CMU scored the first four points of the set and went ahead 6-1 before Creighton made a steady comeback. Creighton would use a 6-1 run of its own to tie the score at 15. The Jays would also be tied with the Chippewas at 16, 19, 21 and 22, but never could manage a lead in the set. Creighton hit a respectable .269 in the second set, but couldn’t keep up with a CMU attack that hit .385, including six kills from Lauren Krupsky.
The third set featured 18 ties and six lead changes before Creighton outlasted the Chippewas with a 26-24 decision. Creighton trailed 21-20 late before getting kills from Runge, Karisa Almgren and Allie Oelke to go ahead 23-22. After exchanging sideouts, Central Michigan saved one set point on Krupsky’s eighth kill of the set, knotting the score at 24. Sanford and Megan Bober would team to block Krupsky to give CU a second set point, taking advantage of it this time when Bober found an open corner for the kill. Creighton hit .412 in the set, with 15 kills and just one error on 34 swings.
Creighton trailed nearly the entire fourth set. Trailing 22-19 late, Creighton scored five straight points to get to match point. The Chippewas would save one opportunity with a block, but not the second when freshman libero Jenna Coates served into the net to end the match.
Runge led Creighton in kills for the 10th time in as many matches with 18 terminations on .382 hitting. Karisa Almgren had nine kills while hitting .500, while Bober and Oelke each finished with eight kills. Oelke led CU with 13 digs, while Sanford had a hand in seven of CU’s nine blocks. Creighton had 54 kills, six aces, 48 digs and nine blocks while hitting .291.
Central Michigan was led by 21 kills from Krupsky, while Val DeWeerd had 10 kills on .474 hitting. CMU had 52 kills, four aces, 50 digs and seven blocks while hitting .213 as a squad.
“I think we played an aggressive non-conference schedule and that has done a nice job preparing us for the conference season which starts next weekend in Carbondale,” said Booth. “It will be a challenge to play two great teams but we’ll be ready for batttle.”
Creighton will open Missouri Valley Conference play on the road next weekend, playing at Southern Illinois on Friday and at Evansville on Saturday. Both matches will start at 7 pm.
Story courtesy of Creighton athletics.