NORTHFIELD, Minn.— Karen Halls (Jr./Edina, Minn./Edina) and Rachel Johnson (Sr./Woodbury, Minn./Woodbury)each recorded 12 kills and hit .321 and .375 respectively, but the Carleton College volleyball team dropped a non-conference match to the University of Northwestern Wednesday evening at West Gymnasium.
Carleton (11-11 overall) jumped out to an early lead in the match, as the Knights claimed a 25-17 win in the first set. After dropping the first point of the set, Carleton earned a side out courtesy of a Caroline Duke (Fy./Evanston, Ill./Evanston) kill. The Knights then reeled off 15 out of the next 22 points to take a 16-8 lead in the set. After a min-run by Northwestern (12-10 overall) brought the Eagles to within four at 17-13, Carleton won eight out of the final 12 points to earn the set win and early lead in the match.
After the two teams traded points for the first portion of the second set, the score was tied at 15-15 before Northwestern closed out the game with a 10-2 scoring run to win the set 25-17 and even the match score at one all.
The Knights were unable to break the Northwestern momentum in the third game. Trailing 19-10 late in the set, Carleton roared back with a 14-5 scoring burst and eventually tied the score at 24-24 after a kill by Liz Groesbeck (Jr./Henderson, Nev./Green Valley). A kill by Halls on the ensuing play gave the Knights their first set-point opportunity in the game, but they were unable to close out the set, as the Eagles won the next three points to earn a 27-25 win.
The two teams played even through the majority of the fourth set, before the Eagles used a scoring run late in the set to earn a 25-20 win and match victory.
“We started off strong and battled but just couldn't consistently keep the momentum our way,” stated Carleton head coach Heidi Jaynes following her team’s match.
Camille Benson (So./Savage, Minn./Burnsville) paced the Knights defense with a match-best 25 digs, while teammate Alicia Flatt (Jr./Walnut Creek, Calif./Carondelet) added a team-high 28 assists. Caroline Duke (Fy./Evanston, Ill./Evanston) added 14 assists, nine kills and seven digs, while Ellie Schmidt (Sr./Denver, Colo./East) and Lexi Papke (So./Strum, Wis./Regis) added five kills each. As a team, Carleton had nine aces, led by four from Benson and two from Ashley Shin (So./Stanford, Calif./Palo Alto).
Cari Miller led the Eagle offensive attack with 18 kills and a .417 hitting percentage.
Carleton will return to action this Saturday, as they will travel to Arden Hills, Minn. to take on Bethel University at 6 p.m. Prior to departing campus on Saturday, the Knights will host their annual alumni game at West Gym at 10 a.m.