LMU Improves to 2-0 with Sweep of Binghamton
LMU hit .400 over the course of the match to sweep Binghamton.
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - The LMU volleyball team (2-0) came out swinging for the second straight match, hitting .400 as a squad en route to sweeping Binghamton (0-2) by scores of 25-14, 25-16, 25-19 on Saturday at the 2014 Concourse Hotel at LAX Classic. Freshman Sarah Sponcil led the Lions to victory, collecting a match-high tying 11 kills on 18 errorless swings for a .611 hitting percentage.
Sponcil, a native of Phoenix, Ariz., teamed her 11 kills with one of LMU's seven service aces on Saturday afternoon. Senior Caitlin DeWitt, who got off to a blistering start to the season with 11 kills on Friday, continued her solid campaign with nine kills on 22 swings (.409) to go along with two aces. Junior Amber Mirabello contributed eight kills on 15 attacks to record a .467 hitting percentage.
Junior setter Hannah Tedrow was distributing the ball well on Saturday, dishing out 36 assists, while she also posted two block assists to help LMU to six total team blocks. Junior Rachelle Suaava, who had six kills in the match, highlighted the work on the block, totaling a block solo and four block assists.
Allison Hovie proved to be the attacking force for the Bearcats on Saturday, collecting a match-high tying 11 kills on 29 swings. Two other players finished with better than five kills, including Megan Burgess with six on 15 attacks.
The Lions did not trail in the opening set, jumping out to an early 4-0 lead that was highlighted by a pair of kills from Mirabello. The native of Palm Harbor, Fla. finished the set with three kills on four swings as LMU hit .407 as a team. Binghamton managed to stay fairly close into the middle of the set, but LMU would extend the lead to 16-10 by way of a three-point run that was capped by a Suaava kill. Back-to-back service aces from DeWitt forced a Binghamton timeout at 19-11 before LMU went on a five-point run from 20-14 to 25-14 to close the set.
It was much of the same for the Lions in set two, as LMU hit a healthy .423 behind three kills apiece from DeWitt, Mirabello and Suaava. This time LMU raced to a 5-0 lead to open the set, never looking back from there en route to claiming a 25-16 victory. Four straight attack errors for the Bearcats put them in the early hole, as Binghamton managed just a .107 clip in the second. Freshman Lindsay Carr got her first feel for college volleyball in the second, entering as a substitute and finishing the period with a pair of kills on four attacks.
After coasting to victory in the first two sets, LMU had to grind a bit in the third to earn the sweep. The two teams played to three lead changes early, but the set saw just a one-point differential as late as 18-17 in favor of LMU. The Lions went on a three-point run from there, benefitting from a pair of Bearcat errors to create some breathing room at 21-17 and force a BU timeout. Although Binghamton would cut into the deficit with two points out of the huddle, LMU finished the match on a four-point swing that was highlighted by a Suaava kill. Sponcil had her best set of the match to guide LMU to the sweep, posting five of her 11 kills on eight attacks. The Lions, who hit .375 in the period, also came alive on the block, collecting four total blocks, including three block assists from Suaava.
Action at the 2014 Concourse Hotel at LAX Classic continues today at 5 p.m. when Binghamton and LIU Brooklyn meet to close out their matches. LMU will then host UCLA in the Championship Match tonight at 7:30 p.m.
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