Phoenix Volleyball Swept in Road Battle at UIC
CHICAGO (GreenBayPhoenix.com) - The Green Bay volleyball team (9-8, 1-3) fell 3-0 to UIC (10-10, 3-2) on Friday night in a Horizon League contest at the Flames Athletic Center in Chicago. The 25-19, 25-21, 25-14 result marked the second straight 3-0 win for the Flames, and the first time the Phoenix had been swept since Sept. 1.
"We weren't ready to play tonight and UIC took advantage of it," Phoenix head coach Debbie Kirch said. "As a coach, I need to do a better job of making sure we are ready to go from point one. We will keep looking for the answer, starting tomorrow at Loyola."
Green Bay recorded the match's first point on a kill by Leah Van Zeeland (Kaukauna, Wis.), but the Flames took control after that, building a 9-5 lead early in set one and forcing a Phoenix timeout. Green Bay kept it close, trailing just 15-13 after a kill by Katie Mroczenski (New Berlin, Wis.), but the home team pushed its lead to 22-17 before closing out the first set 25-19.
Set two saw the Phoenix on top 6-3 to start, but the Flames rallied back with a 6-0 run, capped off by one of Sara Sternard's 12 kills. Green Bay rallied with an 8-3 run of its own to regain the advantage at 14-12, but another kill by Sternard gave the Flames a 17-16 lead - one they would not give back. Kills by Van Zeeland and Lyndsay Zabkowicz (Oak Creek, Wis.) knotted the score at 21-21, but a 4-0 run gave the Flames the 25-21 win and the 2-0 lead.
The third set was all UIC, as the hosts surged out to 6-2 advantage and never looked back. The Flames opened up a 10-point margin at 18-8, and finished with its largest lead of the match at 25-14.
UIC was paced by senior Janise Dismuke, who finished with a match-high 13 kills and a hitting percentage of .400. MaryKate Imrie managed the Flames offense with 41 assists, while Justine Garcia and Maggie Strus had 10 digs apiece.
Carmen Leitermann (Schofield, Wis.) had a strong performance for the Phoenix in the loss, hitting .450 with a team-high 11 kills. Leah Poel (Jenison, Mich.) finished with 28 assists and Brittany Groth (Oak Creek, Wis.) tallied a match-high 20 digs.
Coupled with last Friday's five-set defeat at Milwaukee, the loss at UIC marked the first time the Phoenix had lost consecutive matches since dropping three straight from Aug. 25-28 in the first week of the season. Green Bay entered Friday's match having won seven of its last 10.
Green Bay returns to action in Chicago tomorrow at 4 p.m., taking on Loyola at Gentile Arena.
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