NoErin Martin (Ames, Iowa) set a new school-record for the most kills in a three-game rallying scoring match with 26, as the No. 1 ranked Minnesota volleyball team (9-1) pushed its winning streak to eight matches by defeating No. 20 Loyola Marymount (7-3) in three games by scores of 32-30, 30-20, 30-23 in its second match of the GlaxoSmithKline UNC Volleyball Classic on Saturday, Sept. 18 at the Carmichael Auditorium. With the win, Minnesota moved to 2-0 in the tournament, while Loyola Marymount dropped to 0-2.
Minnesota moved to 9-1 with the win, marking only the fourth time in school history it has started out that well in its first 10 matches. Three of those seasons have come under Hebert, including 1998 when the Golden Gophers started 9-1 and 2000 when Minnesota started out 10- 0. Minnesota also started 10-0 in 1974.
Martin also hit .489 (26-3-47) for the match. Trisha Bratford (Reseda, Calif.) had double-figure kills with 11 for the match. Paula Gentil (Forteleaza Ceara', Brazil) also had a match-high 23 digs for Minnesota.
Kelly Bowman (Maple Grove, Minn.) had six kills, 34 assists and seven digs, while Lindsey Taatjes had five kills, 20 assists, eight digs and tied with a team-high four blocks.
Loyola Marymount jumped out to a 12-8 lead in game one, but Erin Martin (Ames, Iowa) delivered three consecutive kills and a solo block to help Minnesota tie the score at 12. The Lions scored three of the next four points to go up 15-13, but the Golden Gophers answered with a 4-0 run to grab a 17-15 lead. Loyola Marymount answered with the next two points to tie the game at 17.
Minnesota scored the next two points to move ahead 19-17, but the Lions answered with four of the next six points to tie the game at 21. The two teams tied at 22 and 23, before Minnesota scored two consecutive points to take a 25-23 lead. Loyola Marymount came back with five of the next seven points to reclaim the lead at 28-27. The two teams exchanged points to give the Lions game point at 29-28. Martin tied the game at 29 with a kill to fight off a game point. Loyola Marymount followed that with an attack error to give Minnesota game point at 30-29. The Lions fought off game point to tie it at 30, but Martin put down a kill to give the Golden Gophers another game point at 31-30. Meredith Nelson (St. Croix Falls, Wis.) finally ended the game with a kill to give Minnesota at 32-30 game-one victory to put the Golden Gophers up 1-0 in the match.
Martin hit .421 (9-1-19) in the game pacing Minnesota with nine kills The Golden Gophers narrowly outhit the Lions .204 to .200, and had 20 kills to 16 for Loyola Marymount.
The Lions jumped out to an 8-7 lead to start off the second game. However, Minnesota scored eight of the next 10 points to take a 15-10 lead. Martin had three kills, while Byrnes had a kill and combined on a pair of blocks with Lindsey Taatjes (Prinsburg, Minn.) during the run. Loyola Marymount scored six of the next eight points to trim the lead down to 17-16. Minnesota responded with an 8-1 run to take a 25- 17 lead. The Lions scored the next two points to cut the deficit to 25-19. Paced by three kills from Martin, Minnesota scored four of the next five points to push it to game point at 29-20. Kelly Bowman (Maple Grove, Minn.) put down a kill to give Minnesota game two 30- 20, which gave the Golden Gophers a 2-0 lead in the match.
Minnesota had its highest single-game hitting percentage of the season at .526, while limiting Loyola Marymount to .098. The Golden Gophers also outblocked the Lions 3.5-to-0.0 in the game, and had 21 kills to 12 for Loyola Marymount. Martin paced the Minnesota attack with her second nine-kill game of the match. The nine kills in each of the first two games matched her season-high for kills in a game. Martin also hit .667 (9-1-13) as well in the second game.
The Golden Gophers jumped out to a 4-0 lead in game three, but Loyola Marymount cut it to 6-5. Minnesota answered with nine of the next 12 points to push the lead out to 15-8. The Lions scored the next three points to cut it to 15-11, before Martin ended the run with a kill to put Minnesota up 16-11. Loyola Marymount cut the lead to 17-14, but the Golden Gophers scored the next two points to push it back out to 19-14.
The Lions scored six of the next eight points to cut the lead to 21- 19. Loyola Marymount cut the lead down to 22-21 ,before Martin delivered a kill to Minnesota up 23-21. On the next play, Nelson and Taatjes combined on a block to move the Golden Gophers ahead 24-21. The Lions cut it to 24-22, but Martin came right with back-to-back kills to push the lead back up to 26-22. Loyola Marymount cut the lead to 26-23, but Minnesota scored the next three points to move it to match point at 29-23. Nelson and Bowman combined on a block to give Minnesota the game at 30-23, along with the match.
Minnesota outhit Loyola Marymount .328 to .162 for the match. The Golden Gophers had 60 kills to 44 for the Lions. Minnesota also outblocked Loyola Marymount 8.5-to-4.0.
The Golden Gophers are now 4-1 against ranked opponents this season, and have won three straight matches against top 20 teams.
Loyola Marymount was led by Krista Houseman who had 15 kills. Michelle Look had a team-high 15 digs for the Lions.
The Golden Gophers will finish the tournament against host North Carolina on Sept. 18 at 6:30 p.m. (CT).