Washington-St. Louis sweeps Chicago
Bears win 10th consecutive match, await Carthage on Sunday
ST. LOUIS -- No. 2 Washington-St. Louis earned its 10th consecutive win with a 25-17, 25-22, 25-16 victory against No. 15 Chicago in the 2011 NCAA tournament at the WU Field House.
Washington U improved to 34-1 and will play No. 9 Carthage in the NCAA second round on Sunday. Carthage advanced with a 25-20, 25-19, 27-25 win against No. 16 Elmhurst in its semifinal match. Chicago ended its season with a 30-6 record, including three losses to Washington U.
“It was a great match,” Washington University interim coach Lisa Orlet said. “Chicago made us remain focused and constantly make adjustments. I loved how the girls responded. They are very focused right now.”
Washington U. jumped out to a 5-2 lead in the first set off a kill by hitter Meghan Byrne. The Bears pushed their lead to 12-5 with back-to-back kills by junior Drew Hargrave and a block by senior Lauren Budde and Hargrave. Washington U. extended its lead to as much as 20-10 off a block by sophomores Kaia Schwartz and Megan Odenthal. Chicago fought off three set-point opportunities before a kill by Hargrave gave the Bears the 25-17 win in the opening set. Washington U. hit .462 (13-1-26) in the first set.
The Bears got off to another hot start in the second set, grabbing a 6-1 lead after a kill by junior setter Marilee Fisher. Chicago battled back to tie the score at 7-7 before a kill by Odenthal and an ace by Budde gave the Bears the lead back. Washington U. extended its lead to 20-14 on a kill by Byrne, before Chicago rallied to within 21-19. Back-to-back kills by Hargrave made it 23-19 in favor of the Bears. The Maroons again got to within two, but a kill by Fisher ended the set 25-22 and gave the Bears the 2-0 lead in the match.
Byrne and Hargrave both had hot hands in set three, recording five kills apiece in the set. Washington U. had five ace serves in the third set, including three consecutive by junior libero Kelly Pang to give the Bears an early 4-1 win. The score remained close for the first half of the set before a Hargrave kill made it14-11 in favor of the Bears. An ace by senior Tricia Brandt and another kill by Hargrave made it 16-11. The Bears extended their lead to 19-12 on three consecutive points served by Pang. Chicago got to within 19-15. Byrne smashed three of her 11 kills on the Bears’ next four points, and back-to-back kills by Schwartz gave Washington U. the 25-16 win in set three to end the match.
Washington U. hit .330 for the match, while holding Chicago to just .085 hitting (29-20-106). The Bears had eight ace serves and eight blocks in the match as well. Hargrave paced Washington U. with a match-high 12 kills. Byrne and Budde added 11 and 10 kills, while Fisher posted 35 assists. Pang tallied 14 digs and four ace serves to lead the Bears defensively, while Brandt added 10 digs in the match.