The Northern Michigan University volleyball team had its season come to a screeching halt on Wednesday as the fifth seeded Wildcats were defeated by No. 4 seed Ashland in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Quarterfinal. The Green and Gold held a 2-0 lead before the Eagles bounced back to take the final three sets and the match.
NMU finished the season with a 20-12 overall record.
Northern took set one by a slim 25-23 margin as junior Kalli Herron led the attack for with six kills. Junior Lina Lopes led the defense with six digs while freshman Lisa Studnicka had five and senior Kalin Zimmerman added four. There were 13 lead changes in the set.
Set two also went in NMUâ??s favor 25-20. Herron had five kills while Lopes added two. The â??Cats had a .237 attack percentage and had four team blocks in the second. Senior Jasmine Calhoun was a force at the net with three block assists. Zimmerman had eight digs.
After the break, the Eagles won set three 25-16 after hitting .364.
Studnicka had five kills for NMU while junior Sarah Hamilton added four.
Ashland continued its quality attack with a .350 attack percentage in the fourth and tying the match with a 25-22 win. Lopes had four kills and Studnicka added three.
The final set went in favor of the home squad 15-7 as the Eagles defeated the â??Cats in five sets for the second time this season and ended Northernâ??s season for the second year in a row.
Herron (15), Lopes (13) and Studnicka (11) led the NMU offense that was setup by junior Kellisha Harley with 45 assists. Zimmerman led the defense with 23 digs while Lopes chipped in with 18. Calhoun finished with six block assists while Herron had four.
For the Eagles, Brittany Snider had a match-high 20 kills. Baley Bemthisel was also in double digits with 15 and Crystal Elliot setup the offense with 48 assists. Marci Zegarac led Ashland with 22 digs.
Ashland is now 23-7 and advances to the GLIAC Semifinal on Saturday against top-seeded Northwood.