Idaho State University Sports Information
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Idaho State volleyball team fell 3-0 to No. 3 Idaho in the quarterfinals of the Big Sky Conference Tournament, hosted by Sacramento State in Sacramento, Calif. The Bengals fell 25-17, 25-18 and 25-23 to close the 2017 season. It was the final match for seniors Chloe Hirst, Marissa Dance and Makayla Lundin.
“These seniors have given a lot to this program,” Head Coach Rick Reynolds said. “I am proud of the women they have become and the successes they have achieved on and off the court.”
The Bengals were led by Hirst with 11 kills to go along with nine digs while junior outside hitter Abby Garrity added 10 kills and six digs. Sophomore libero Haylie Keck finished with 15 digs and Lundin added 24 assists.
Idaho State (11-19) kept the first set close in the beginning tying the set six times in the first few plays. A kill from Idaho’s Haylee Mathis broke a seven-all tie, and the Vandals were able to gain some separation with a 4-0 run to lead 11-7. Idaho (18-10) terminated at a high level, connecting for 16 kills off 27 attempts with just two errors to hit .519, and the Bengals were unable to stop the attack. Idaho continued to terminate to earn the 25-17 win.
In the second set, Idaho State finished with more kills than Idaho with a 15-13 advantage, yet the Bengals struggled to get any sort of momentum, suffering six hitting errors, two service errors and one blocking error. Idaho State put together a 4-2 run to cut Idaho’s lead to one, 11-10, but the Vandals responded, out-scoring ISU 9-2 to take a 20-12 lead. The Bengals could not close the gap and Idaho took the second set, 25-18.
Idaho State battled back in the final set as the it featured eight ties and five lead changes. Yet the Bengals continued to struggle offensively, connecting for 13 kills with five errors off 44 attempts to hit .182. But the Bengals defense kept them in the set as they dug 17 of Idaho’s 35 attempts; Keck finished with 11 of her 15 digs in the third and final set.
With the set tied 13-all, an offensive burst fueled by five Bengal kills including two each from sophomore middle blocker Brooke Pehrson and Hirst, ISU took a three-point lead 18-15. The Bengals kept the lead until back-to-back kills from Idaho’s Sarah Sharp tied the set 20-all. The two teams traded points until another kill from Sharp gave the Vandals the 23-22 advantage. Idaho never relinquished its lead and held on for the 25-23 set win and 3-0 match sweep.
“I’m really proud of the fight our team showed,” Reynolds said. “We were able to create opportunities in the third set, but Idaho finished better. It is important that you serve and serve receive when you’re at this point of the season, and we didn’t find our rhythm today.”
Idaho was led by Sharp with a match-high 17 kills while Mathis added 34 assists and Alycia Wodke finished with 18 digs.