Like Old Times, Bluejays Battle Shockers, Come Away With 3-2 Win

By: WOWT Email
By: WOWT Email

They're no longer rivals within the confines of the Missouri Valley Conference, but Creighton and Wichita State continued one of the best volleyball rivalries with the fifth five-set match in the past four years, won by the Bluejays.

Meeting as non-conference foes for the first time, CU defeated the host Shockers 16-25, 25-18, 25-20, 18-25, 15-9 in the final match of the Shocker Volleyball Classic.

Creighton is now 8-1 in its last nine five-set matches against WSU, including one such victory in each of the last four years. The Jays closed out non-conference play with a 9-3 mark while Wichita State fell to 11-3.

The Shockers used a 6-0 run on Katie Reilly's serve to build a 10-6 lead and never looked back in the first set. CU would draw to within 14-12, only to see Chelsey Feekin serve up two aces in a 5-0 run that made it 19-12. The Shockers hit .414 in the first set in a 25-16 win, led by seven kills from Sam Sanders while CU was paced by four kills from Leah McNary.

The Bluejays evened the match with a 25-18 victory in the second set. The Jays pulled away thanks to a 6-1 run to move ahead 14-9 and never allowed WSU to score more than two consecutive points in any stretch. CU was led offensively by its freshmen as Lauren Smith had five kills and Jess Bird added four more as CU hit .256. Ashley Andrade led WSU with five kills in the second set, but Sanders was held without a kill in just three swings after a big first frame.

Creighton took a 2-1 lead in the contest with a 25-20 victory in the third frame, keyed by five kills from Smith and four more terminations from McNary. CU broke away with an 8-2 burst to pull ahead 22-15 and never looked back. The Jays hit .438 in the set and won despite allowing 18 kills on .389 hitting to the Shockers.

The fourth set saw the hosts reclaim the momentum with a 25-18 victory to knot the score and force a fifth set. Andrade had five kills in six swings and the Shockers held CU to .024 hitting in the set despite six kills from McNary.

The fifth set featured five ties and three lead changes, only to see CU pull away after a timeout when WSU went ahead 6-4. CU answered with the next four points.

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