BSU Volleyball nearly forces fourth set before falling short to Sioux Falls
Crowl and Bjerklie combine for 20 kills
Despite big offensive numbers from both Ashley Crowl with 11 kills and Rylie Bjerklie with nine kills, it wasn’t enough for the Bemidji State University Volleyball team as Sioux Falls was able to get past the Beavers in three sets (25-19, 25-20, 25-23) Friday night in Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference play inside the BSU Gym.
Ashley Crowl posted a big night with 11 kills and added six digs, along with two service aces. Rylie Bjerklie added nine kills and hit .471. Emily Wade had 32 assists, while on defense, Lauren Justesen tallied 18 digs and Lauren Sitter had three blocks.
Sioux Falls (5-7, 1-3 NSIC) opened the first set on a 5-2 run. Bemidji State (6-7, 3-2 NSIC) came back to take the lead at 8-6 with a kill by Bjerklie, solo block by Zayda Priebe and service ace from Bjerklie. With the set still even 13, the Cougars began to pull away scoring five of the next six points for the 18-14 advantage. BSU fought back to within two a few more times in the set at 18-16 and then at 19-17, before Sioux Falls finished the first set on a 6-2 run to take the opening set at 25-19.
Bemidji State surged out to the 4-1 lead in the second set with Priebe and Sitter combining for three kills. Sioux Falls came right back with a quick 7-0 run for the 8-4 lead. BSU was back to within a point at 9-8 following points by Wade and Bjerklie. The Beavers kept fighting getting to within four a few times down the stretch on points by Crowl before Sioux Falls took the second set at 25-20.
Trailing 7-4 early in the third set, Bemidji State answered with a 6-2 run to take the lead at 10-9. Priebe tallied a pair of kills, around a pair of service aces by Crowl. The lead stretched to three at 15-12 with Bjerklie tallying a kill after Sitter had a service ace and a solo block by Hallie Mertz. Sioux Falls pushed in front at 19-17 with a 5-0 run, but the Beavers kept fighting to even the set at 19 with another two kills by Crowl. Down 23-21, a double block by Sitter and Bjerklie, led to a service ace by Sitter to tie the set at 23. Sioux Falls then closed strong winning the final two points for the 25-23 third set win and 3-0 match victory.
Sioux Falls tallied 41 kills to 12 errors in 103 chances (.282), while Bemidji State collected 36 kills to 18 errors in 101 chances (.178).
Bemidji State will continue their homestand this Tuesday when they host No. 10 Minnesota Duluth starting at 6 p.m. inside the BSU Gym