Sept. 5, 2009

Courtesy of Nebraska-Kearney

Kearney, Neb.  – The 5th-ranked Nebraska-Kearney volleyball team fell from the ranks of the unbeaten when the Ferris State (Mich.) Bulldogs beat the Lopers, 3-1 (14-25, -18, -21, -12), Friday afternoon at the St. Cloud State Invitational in Minnesota.

Earlier in the day, the Lopers beat the home standing SCSU Huskies in four sets (24-26, -22, -21, -12). UNK is now 6-1 on the young season.  

Ferris State, from Big Rapids, Mich., managed a 3-2 win over Upper Iowa in its Friday morning match. The Bulldogs (5-2) didn’t need a late rally to beat the Lopers as they got three big performances.

First, senior middle Kristy Gilchrist had a team-best 14 kills and hit a match-high .560. She also supplied 11 digs, four aces and three blocks. Next, senior outside Katie Edwards had 12 kills and hit .308 with sophomore outside Ashley Huntey going for 10 kills, 13 digs and hitting at a .258 clip.

FSU out hit UNK on the night. 275 to .245, had five more team blocks (7.0-2.0) and served up 12 aces.

The Lopers did get a combined 29 kills from middles Nikki Scott and Jeri Walkowiak but the rest of the squad managed only 21 kills and 12 errors.

In a pivotal third set, a kill from Walkowiak cut the Ferris lead to 21-19. However, a kill from Sarah Lark and an unforced Loper error put the ‘Dawgs just two points from victory. Finally, a kill from Samantha Fordyce ended the set and gave FSU a 2-1 lead.

Ferris just rolled from there, having 13 kills and six aces in the final set.

To beat a St. Cloud team that is now 2-4 on the season, the Lopers got 19 kills from Scott and 17 digs from Iowa junior Katlyn Heiserman. Against Ferris, Heiserman had a career-best 18 digs.

After seeing the Huskies rally from a 21-20 deficit to win the first set by two points, UNK never trailed in winning the second and third sets. The Lopers then had 13 kills and had an 83 percent sideout effort to roll in game four.

UNK faces Upper Iowa and Missouri S & T Saturday. Pictured below are Scott-Heiserman.