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Volleyball wins home opener

September 10, 2012
By Randy Payton of University of Rio Grande

Rio Grande Sports Information

    RIO GRANDE, Ohio – The University of Rio Grande volleyball team jumped to a quick lead and never looked back, rolling to a 3-0 (25-14, 28-26, 25-14) win over Lourdes University, Friday night, at the Newt Oliver Arena.

    With the win, the RedStorm rebounded from a season-opening setback at the University of Northwestern Ohio on Wednesday night.

    Rio blew open the first set with 10 consecutive points to snap a 10-10 tie and appeared on its way to an easy win in set two, taking a 24-17 lead.

    Lourdes (4-7) stormed back, though, once it got the serve following a hitting error by the RedStorm and Chelsea Haas reeled off seven straight winners to give the Gray Wolves a 25-24 lead.

    Rio finally regained the lead at 27-26 thanks to a kill by senior outside hitter Whitney Smith (Albany, OH) and the RedStorm secured the set thanks to a Lourdes hitting error on the ensuing serve.

    Set three also proved close for a while, with Rio holding just a 13-9 edge midway through. Junior defensive specialist Nicole Ogg (Albany, OH) fired off seven consecutive service winners, the final two of which were punctuated by Smith kills, to give the RedStorm a 21-9 lead.

    The Gray Wolves got no closer than 11 the rest of the way.

    Smith led Rio Grande with 11 kills, while senior libero Lauren Raines (Albany, OH) added 16 digs and freshman middle blocker Alex Phillips (Williamsport, OH) finished with seven blocks. Junior setters Kelsey Martin (Jackson, OH) and Kayla Landaker (Coshocton, OH) had 15 and 13 assists, respectively.

    Katie McKenty led Lourdes with 15 kills, while Michi Jiminez added 17 assists and 18 digs.

    Rio Grande will host Union (Ky. ) and Cincinnati Christian on Saturday, at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., respectively.

    Lourdes will face Union (Ky.) at 9 a.m. and Cincinnati Christian at 11 a.m.

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