Playing a road match one night after hosting Long Beach State in Gersten Pavilion, LMU volleyball (5-3) hit .288 as a team while collecting 10 blocks in a three-set sweep over San Diego State (2-5) on Friday night. The Lions took the match by scores of 25-19, 25-23, 25-22.
The Lions received a team-best 12 kills, an ace and seven digs from sophomore Savannah Slattery, while junior Sara Kovac connected for a .412 hitting percentage, posting 11 kills on 17 attacks with just four errors.
Leading the way on the block, sophomore Emma Johnson finished with a block solo and five block assists, teaming those marks with five kills. Sophomore Megan Rice also put together a solid all-around match, pairing seven kills with five blocks while hitting .375.
Continuing to control the flow of the attack, sophomores Tess Reid and Jessie Prichard dished out 21 and 17 assists, respectively. Both players collected five digs in the victory, with Prichard also tallying one kill.
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Alexandra Psoma led all players with 15 kills for the Aztecs, while Deja Harris pitched in 12 kills while hitting .364 with a block solo and three block assists.
Both teams hit for stellar percentages in the first set, with LMU connecting at a .433 clip behind three kills apiece from Slattery, Johnson, Rice and Kovac. LMU never trailed in the first period, opening up a 5-1 lead from first serve and never looking back. Freshmen Meredith Teague and Sierra Bartley teamed for the set-winning block, one of three in the period for the Lions.
It was another strong attacking set for the Lions in the second, as LMU hit .370 while benefiting from three more kills from Slattery, Rice and Kovac. LMU's blocking game also stepped up a notch, with Johnson managing a solo and two block assists to guide LMU to four team blocks. It was anyone's set late in the period, as the two teams found themselves knotted at 21-21. LMU won the next two points to take a step toward victory, with the second coming by way of a service ace from Teague. Harris and Rice traded kills over the next two points, setting the table for Rice's set-winner to take the commanding 2-0 lead in the match.
Slattery and Kovac finished the match on a high note, registering six and five kills, but LMU had to come from behind to earn the road sweep. San Diego State hit just .028 in the finale, but it managed five blocks to nearly force a fourth. LMU trailed 15-11, but managed to claw its way back to even at 17-17, sending the match down the stretch. Still tied at 21-21, LMU won three straight points, including two on kills from Slattery and Rice, to force match point at 24-21. Psoma found the floor to keep the Aztecs alive, but Kovac answered with her final kill of the night to ensure LMU's second sweep in as many days.
LMU will return to action on Wednesday when it travels to #11 UCLA for a 4:30 p.m. match that will air live on the Pac-12 Network.
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