Sept. 28, 2012
Cleveland, Ohio - Loyola got 20 kills from Anna Eytchison and also used its net defense to record 12.5 blocks as the Ramblers handed Cleveland State its first Horizon League loss of the season, 3-0 (25-14, 25-19, 25-21), tonight at Woodling Gymnasium in Cleveland, Ohio. Loyola improves to 10-6 (2-1 Horizon) while the Vikings slide to the same mark (10-6, 2-1) with the loss.
"It definitely feels great to be able to go into Cleveland and pick off a win," said head coach Chris Muscat. "We played really well as a team tonight. It was a total team effort and we have 13 young women on this team that are team players and know what their role is to help us become a great team and I will take that any day over great players. We were prepared and focused tonight and, top to bottom, executed and got the job done."
Loyola signaled its intent by scoring four of the first five points of the match and the Ramblers used two aces from Kathleen Vogel in a 5-0 run that gave the visitors a 14-7 lead. Two Eytchison kills later made it a 19-10 bulge and a block from Laura Purcell and Nichole Riedel closed out an impressive 25-14 victory in the opening set. Loyola hit a sizzling .500 (13-2-22) in the set and were led by five kills from Eytchison.
Kills from Eytchison and Libby Bresser helped the Ramblers jump out to an early 6-2 lead in the second set but the Vikings battled back and pulled even at 7-7 after two LU errors. Two more Eytchison kills and single kills from Riedel and Vogel pushed Loyola back out in front and Eytchison capped a four-point scoring run with a kill to help the Ramblers extend to a 17-10 lead. Cleveland State again began to chip away, getting as close as three (20-17) on a Kerry Winchester kill. However, Loyola responded with kills from Vogel and Riedel to give them some breathing room back and a block from Bresser and Brittany Brown gave the visitors a 25-19 win and a 2-0 lead heading to the intermission. Eytchison was outstanding in the frame, drilling nine kills in 15 errorless swings to lead the charge.
Cleveland State came out of the locker room strong, racing out to an early 7-3 edge. Loyola got right back into the set behind its block with Bresser leading the way. The sophomore teamed up with Brown for two stuffs and with Eytchison for a third as LU scored the next four points to forge a 7-all tie. The teams battled through the middle stages of the set before kills from Eytchison and Vogel helped Loyola crawl out to an 18-15 lead. Cleveland State hung tough and eventually pulled within a point (21-20) on a Jackie Dabbelt kill. However, the young Ramblers showed their maturity as Vogel slowed the home team's momentum with a kill before Eytchison and Riedel teamed up for a big block to make it a 23-20 game. Another CSU hitting error followed, sending the Ramblers to match point, and two points later Purcell hammered down a kill to seal the match.
Eytchison finished with a match-high 20 kills and did so while hitting .410 (20-4-39) for the match to lead Loyola. Vogel reached double figures for the fifth consecutive match, finishing with 10 kills, while Brown handed out 33 assists and guided the offense to a .360 hitting percentage. Bresser was also solid in the middle, racking up seven blocks to go with four kills. Cleveland State's Kara Koch, who came into the match leading the Horizon League in kills, led the Vikings with 10 kills but hit just -.061 due to 12 errors.
Loyola looks for a weekend sweep tomorrow when it takes on Youngstown State at 3 p.m.