Tina Elstner and Carly Lemke combined for 23 kills in the opener as the UW-Oshkosh women's volleyball team split a pair of matches to begin the UW-Oshkosh Classic on Friday (Oct. 6) in Kolf Sports Center.
Elstner pounded down 13 kills while Lemke added 10 terminations on .643 hitting during the Titans' 3-0 victory over North Park University (Ill.). Nationally ranked University of St. Thomas (Minn.) then defeated UW-Oshkosh, 3-0, in the nightcap.
UW-Oshkosh (9-12) swept North Park University in set scores of 25-12, 25-17, 25-10 before University of St. Thomas downed the Titans, 25-23, 25-12, 25-23. University of St. Thomas (17-4), the 2012 national champion, is ranked 17th in the NCAA Division III by the American Volleyball Coaches Association.
The Titans have won each of their four meetings with North Park University and 11 of their 17 matchups with University of St. Thomas since 1994.
UW-Oshkosh hit a season-high .384 and trailed for just one point during Friday's sweep over North Park University.
The Titans held considerable advantages in kills (36-18), hitting percentage (.384 to -.014), assists (30-16), service aces (5-2), digs (28-26) and blocks (5-0).
Samantha Jaeke added five kills, 13 assists and three blocks for the Titans, who also received a match-best 15 assists and seven digs from Rebecca Doughty, seven digs from Rachel Gardner and four blocks from Shelby Coron.
UW-Oshkosh collected 14 kills on .407 hitting in the first set and 13 terminations on .524 hitting in the third frame. The Titans held the Vikings to a .077 hitting percentage in Set 1, -.160 in Set 2 and .050 in Set 3.
The Titans raced out to a 10-2 lead in the first set behind two kills apiece from Jaeke and Lemke. A Vikings attack error increased the UW-Oshkosh cushion to 17-6, and a double-block by Lemke and Brianna Witter capped the frame.
North Park University (11-7) held its lone lead at 1-0 in the second set, but a service ace from UW-Oshkosh's Katie Hodges capped a string of four unanswered points, and the Titans led each point the rest of the way. The Vikings pulled within 8-7 on a service aces, but UW-Oshkosh tallied seven of the next eight points to extend its lead to 15-8, and back-to-back kills by Lemke ended the set.
UW-Oshkosh scored 12 of the first 14 points of the third set and owned a 22-8 advantage following two straight kills by Elstner and a termination by Lemke. Elstner's final kill of the match provided the Titans a 23-9 cushion, and Lemke once again ended the frame with consecutive kills to clinch UW-Oshkosh's fifth 3-0 victory of the season.
Kelly Clinton led North Park University with five kills. Kajsa Meyer amassed a team-best 13 assists for the Vikings while Mia Riccolo led all players with nine digs.
In the hard-fought loss to University of St. Thomas, UW-Oshkosh held leads of 18-17 in the first set, 7-3 in the second and 21-18 in the third.
University of St. Thomas held advantages in kills (39-32), hitting percentage (.218 to .134), assists (37-32) and service aces (5-1) while UW-Oshkosh had a 38-32 edge in digs and a 9.5-7 lead in blocks.
The Tommies' Ellie Etzell had a match-high 11 kills on 18 attempts, Whitney Lloyd added nine terminations, Julia Spacek chipped in six kills and four blocks, and Madie Kroehler had six kills and three service aces.
Katharine Mallak and Hannah Schwartz notched 22 and 14 assists, respectively, while co-directing the University of St. Thomas offense, and Ellie Meyer paced the Tommie back row with eight digs.
Lemke led UW-Oshkosh with eight kills while Renee Rush added seven terminations and Elstner five kills with a match-best 12 digs and five blocks.
Jaeke compiled seven kills, a team-best 16 assists and seven digs. Doughty contributed 15 assists while sharing setting duties with Jaeke.
Set 1 featured 12 ties and seven lead changes. The Tommies owned the largest lead of the set at 15-11 following back-to-back kills. However, UW-Oshkosh rallied to knot the score at 16 on a Tommie attack error before reclaiming a 17-16 edge on a kill from Lemke. A kill by Rush gave UW-Oshkosh its last advantage at 18-17, but a pair of kills and a service ace gave University of St. Thomas a 20-18 lead. The Titans tied the score once again at 20 after a kill by Rush and a Tommie attack error, but University of St. Thomas notched a kill and a service ace for a 22-20 lead. UW-Oshkosh pulled within 24-23 on a combination block from Jaeke and Lemke, but the Tommies registered a kill on their third set-point opportunity.
UW-Oshkosh cruised out to a 7-3 lead in the second set behind a pair of kills, two blocks and three University of St. Thomas errors. The Tommies responded with 11 of the next 12 points, including seven on kills, for a 14-8 advantage and led by at least five points for the remainder of the frame as University of St. Thomas outhit UW-Oshkosh, .333 to -.115 during the set.
The Tommies recorded a pair of service aces en route to opening Set 3 with a 5-1 lead. Trailing 10-6, UW-Oshkosh scored eight of the next 10 points to reclaim a 14-12 lead on a double-block from Elstner and Lemke. The Titans tallied three consecutive points on a pair of blocks and a kill for a 19-16 edge, and a kill by Coron gave UW-Oshkosh a 20-17 advantage. Two straight Titan attack errors allowed the Tommies to forge a tie at 21, but University of St. Thomas committed an error of its own for a 22-21 UW-Oshkosh lead. The teams exchanged kills on the next three points to create another tie at 23 before a Titan attack error and a Tommie kill concluded the match.
UW-Oshkosh outhit University of St. Thomas in the first and third sets, recording 14 kills at a .220 rate in the opening frame and 13 terminations on .233 hitting in the final set. The Tommies registered 14 kills with a .209 hitting percentage in Set 1 and 12 kills on .147 hitting in Set 3.
The Titans conclude play at the UW-Oshkosh Classic when its hosts Simpson (Iowa) and St. Olaf (Minn.) colleges on Saturday (Oct. 7) in Kolf Sports Center.