Augustana fought hard but dropped match two of the Vulcan Classic to Nebraska-Kearney. The Vikings’ effort wasn’t good enough to best the 4th ranked Lopers ultimately losing 25-21, 25-19, 26-24 and now sit at 1-1 in the 2012 season.
The first set was tight from start to finish. Until the Lopers took the lead 22-19, neither team had a lead larger than two points. Holly Hafemeyer had four kills and Taylor Hrdlichka contributed three, but the Vikings only hit a .114 attack percentage.
The momentum from set one carried over for the Lopers as they jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead. They steadily expanded their lead over the Vikings reaching eight points six times. Once the score hit 21-13, Vikings gave it one more shot in set two. Hafemeyer ripped off four kills to help pull the Vikings within four points at 23-19, but the Lopers closed it out with two quick kills.
The Vikings held a slight lead in the early stages of the third set, but a four-point flurry from Nebraska-Kearney gave the Lopers a lead at 17-14, but the Vikings clawed their way back to knot the score at 19 apiece. After falling behind 23-21, Augustana took a lead at 24-23 with the help of a Brooke Lewko kill and a Marissa Johnson ace. The Lopers then closed out the third set on three straight errors from Vikings players to finish the match.
Holly Hafemeyer led the way offensively with another efficient night. Hafemeyer smashed a match-high 16 kills, with only one error for another outstanding .417 attack percentage.
Freshman Marissa Johnson continues to play well from the setter position as she bested her previous career high (set the previous night) with 39 assists.
Kayla Wallerich and Julia Witt each dug 12 balls to lead the Vikings and as a team. Augustana had 12 block assists equating to 6 total blocks.
The Vikings fall to 3-4 all-time against Nebraska-Kearney.
Augustana will play their third match of the Vulcan Classic against British Columbia at 8 p.m.