KERRVILLE, Texas – The University of Dallas volleyball team picked up a split on Saturday's Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference (SCAC) Crossover hosted by Schreiner University. Dallas (8-11, 3-4 SCAC) edged Johnson & Wales University (2-16, 0-7 SCAC) in a set sweep before falling to Texas Lutheran University (10-10, 3-4 SCAC) in four sets.
MATCH 1 VS. JOHNSON & WALES
Set 1: 22-25
Set 2: 19-25
Set 3: 22-25
Dallas was able to shake off a three-game losing slide that included consecutive conference matches to improve to .500 within league play at the time. The Crusaders were held to some tight sets against JWU, with the first and last determined by the same three-point difference.
In the first set, UD started out leading 12-8 but would have to deal with a 7-1 run that gave the Wildcats the edge. Isabel Garcia (San Antonio, Texas) and Dayjah Whyte (Round Rock, Texas) each chipped in a pair of kills that were part of a 5-1 scoring stretch to propel the Crusaders back on top. Rallies seesawed the score until a quartet of attack errors sent UD up 23-20. Abigail Porras (El Paso, Texas) and Garcia registered kills to conclude the first set victory.
The Crusaders took the first two points of the middle set and never trailed through the duration. Johnson & Wales knotted the score at two and three but otherwise were down in the frame. A slight 15-14 lead turned to 19-15 thanks to a bad set that put Whyte on serve where she won the next point on a service ace. Porras scored the next Dallas points with kills. Dallas' largest lead was five in the set.
Johnson & Wales moved to a 14-10 advantage in the last set, but a Bonnie Baldwin (North Salem, N.Y.) kill sparked four consecutive points that included back-to-back kills from Whyte, who finished with a game-high 15 kills. After Porras had successful kills with a Garcia kill sandwiched between them to open a 21-19 advantage. The Wildcats charged back with the next three points before Dallas called a timeout and got the next three points via errors by the opposition. Porras grabbed the set and match point on an ace.
Behind Whyte's game-high in kills was Garcia with 10 to go with 12 digs for her second double-double this season. Porras contributed nine kills, as the Crusaders amassed a 45-31 advantage to go with a .267 kill percentage versus .122 for Johnson & Wales. Larissa Ramirez (San Antonio, Texas) notched 35 assists. Dallas had 11 different players contribute to its 64-58 edge in digs.
JWU was led by Hope Hines and Brooke Paxton for kills with nine and eight, respectively. Ashlee Ruehs and Jacquelyn Oritz split the majority of 31 assists with 16 and 13. Kaitlin Jones (23) and Hines (16) reached double-digits for digs. The Wildcats edged UD in service aces, 7-3.
MATCH 2 VS. TEXAS LUTHERAN UNIVERSITY
Set 1: 19-25
Set 2: 25-17
Set 3: 20-25
Set 4: 19-25
The match was even in the statistics for points (60) and Dallas outdid Texas Lutheran in kills (53-48) but could only grab a single-set victory as the teams moved to identical records in SCAC play. The Crusaders did commit five more attack errors (25-20) compared TLU.
An attack error gave UD its final edge of the first set with an early 7-6 score. Things were back-and-forth through the first 13 points, but the Bulldogs rattled off six straight points that included three kills by Kitchens to go up the rest of the way. Down as many as six, the Crusaders rallied to get within three (22-19) on a few tries but fell behind 1-0 in sets.
It was a similar script for the second set as sides traded momentum again throughout the way. Dallas moved ahead 12-9 and seemed to keep things at the same margin as the Bulldogs battled to keep from just trading points. Seven of the last eight points went to Dallas with the last five leveling the sets to 1-1. Porras was on serve through the last four Dallas ones and picked up her lone ace to cap the set-win.
In the third set, Dallas battled from a slight deficit to tie things at 17, 18, and finally 19 before five consecutive points went to the Bulldogs to grab control of the frame.
The Crusaders answered by leading most of the fourth set that was highlighted by a 13-10 edge with a 4-0 run that had two kills in a row by Garcia and capped by a Porras kill. The Bulldogs were resilient each time and used another late surge by scoring six-of-seven and the final five points to close the game out.
Whyte and Garcia led the Crusaders offense for the second time on the day matching each other for 12 kills for team-highs. Porras eclipsed double-digits with 11 kills and Andriella Wagner (Round Rock, Texas) secured seven for a personal-best. Ramirez was an assist shy of tying her career best versus LeTourneau University (Sept. 24) with 49. Krystyn Pua (Escondido, Calif.) posted a career-high 39 digs and eclipsed her previous best by one, which was against Austin College (Sept. 17). Elise Anable (Phoenix, Ariz.) tossed up 14 digs and put down eight kills. Dallas held a 90-85 edge in digs.
Bryten Mitchan paced the Bulldogs offense with 17 kills and added three block assists. Paige Day, Kelsi Menn, and Savhannah Kitchens added respective kill totals at eight, seven, and six. Menn was crucial on the block with five block assists and a solo block. TLU accumulated 14 block assists and that lone solo block. Adrienne Galaviz and Jaci Chambers combined for 39 assists with 20 and 19.
Dallas wraps the weekend conference slate up on Sunday with No. 8 Trinity (12 p.m.) and University of St. Thomas (4 p.m.)