Minn.-Duluth wins NSIC championship in sweep against Concordia-St. Paul
ST. PAUL, MINN. -- It's hard to beat a team twice in one season, let alone within a nine day stretch -- but No. 2 Minnesota-Duluth made a clean sweep of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference/U.S. Bank Tournament Championship game, defeating third-ranked Concordia University-St. Paul in three sets in St. Paul on Sunday afternoon.
UMD (31-2) has not defeated Concordia twice in a season since 2007, and they haven't swept the Golden Bears since 2002 -- but the 2013 Bulldogs knocked off CU 25-22, 25-21, and 29-27 on its home court to bring each of those "last times" into the new decade.
"That's an amazing volleyball team, obviously, but we played aggresively and fortunately, we were able to come out on top," said head coach Jim Boos after the match. Four Bulldogs and two Golden Bears made up the 2013 NSIC/U.S. Bank All-Tournament Team, with UMD's senior outside hitter Kate Lange and freshman middle blocker Sydnie Mauch standing out on this day. Lange had 19 kills and nine digs, hitting .385 on the afternoon, while Mauch hit .565 with 15 kills. Sophomore setter Ashley Hinsch also earned an all-tournament nod with 50 assists in the three-set match, also pairing up on a trio of blocks and adding three kills.
On the defensive end, junior libero Julie Rainey had 20 digs to earn herself UMD's fourth All-Tournament selection. Sophomore middle blocker Monica Turner had five blocks, including one solo. CU senior setter Amanda Konetchy and senior right-side hitter Kayla Koenecke rounded out the all-tournament selections. Koenecke had 14 kills against the Bulldogs and Konetchy had 39 assists and 10 digs. UMD hit .346 on a team, while the Golden Bears hit .298. The match had 70 tied scores and lead changes.