SEATTLE — The Saint Mary's women's volleyball team started its 2017 season Friday with a fierce competitiveness, fighting all afternoon right alongside one of the nation's top-10 teams, but it was No. 9 Creighton who would pull out the 3-0 (14-25, 23-25, 20-25) victory in the first game of the Husky Invitational at University of Washington's Alaska Airlines Arena.
HOW IT HAPPENED
· The match featured 21 ties and 13 lead changes, an average of seven ties and four lead changes in each set.
· Creighton broke a 9-9 tie in set one with a 6-1 run that rolled into a 16-5 sprint to the set victory.
· The Bluejays closed set two with three straight points and set three with two consecutive points to edge out the Gaels in each of those frames
· Sarah Chase led Saint Mary's with 11 kills (.258 hitting percentage). Four other Gaels had at least five kills each.
· Lindsey Knudsen led all players with a match-high 14 digs.
· Lindsey Calvin's all-around game included six kills on a .312 hitting percentage, four total blocks and a dig.
· Creighton had three players with double-figure kills and hit .353 as a team.
ROB BROWNING'S WORDS
· “We were outmatched today. It was a combination of their strength as a team and our inability to play consistently.”
· “We are going to figure a few things out and keep moving forward.”
· “Creighton deserves the recognition they are getting, and we owe it to ourselves to play better.”
· Alexsa Parker led Saint Mary's with 18 assists in her indoor volleyball debut after joining the program for the beach season last spring.
· Friday was Sarah Chase's first action on the court in more than 11 months. She last appeared on Sept. 22, 2016, versus Gonzaga before missing the rest of the year due to injury.
· No. 9 Creighton is the first of eight matches SMC has scheduled against top-25 teams. The Gaels will face No. 3 and host Washington on Saturday.
· The 2017 Husky Invitational continues for the Gaels Saturday and Sunday with afternoon matches against 2016 NCAA Tournament teams.
· The Gaels face host and No. 3-ranked Washington at Noon Saturday. Fans can find all live coverage links on SMCGaels.com.
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