WAYNE, NE -- Augustana lost a heart-breaking fourth set to drop the match 3-1 at  No. 18 Wayne State on Tuesday night.  The Wildcats took the match 25-14, 18-25, 25-21, 25-23.  The Vikings' record falls to 14-7 overall, 8-4 in Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference action and Wayne State improves to 16-6 overall and 8-4 in NSIC competition.

The Vikings notched 10 more kills (55-45), but also had 12 more attack errors (29-17) and were held to just a .119 attack percentage for the match.  Augustana also had a rough night at the service line with 10 service errors while surrendering nine service aces.

Taylor Hrdlichka led the Vikings on a sloppy offensive night with 16 kills and just three errors to hit a team high .382 attack percentage.  Grace Sanders scooped up a career-high 35 digs, but it wasn't enough for the Vikings to pull out a tough road win.

It was rough start for the Vikings as the offense sputtered out of the gates and Wayne State took the first set 25-14.  The Vikings swung at a -.048 clip with nine kills and 11 errors.  Augustana appeared poised to make a comeback with a late three-point run, but the Wildcats finished the set on a 5-1 run.

The second set was a different story with the Vikings dictating the game and took a 5-1 lead.  The Wildcats would not sit idly by and took the lead back at 8-7.  But that was stifled by a 7-2 run by the Vikings to give them the lead for good as they went on to a 25-18 set victory.  Augustana compiled 18 kills and only four errors, for a .378 attack percentage in the second set.

An early 7-2 run by Wayne State provided too much of a cushion and the Wildcats held off a furious Augustana charge to take set three 25-21.  Faced with a 19-10 deficit, the Vikings cranked up the offense and closed the gap to 24-21, but it was too little too late.  The Vikings hit a lowly .148 in the third set while only forcing three Wayne State attack errors.

Augustana appeared to be fine nursing a four-point lead for most of the fourth set, but the Wildcats clawed their way back and a big changed call swung the momentum in favor of Wayne State.  The Wildcats were able to tie the match at 18-18, but the Vikings took a timeout to compose themselves and answered with two straight points.  The Wildcats fought right back with three points to take a lead before Augsutana answered to tie it at 23-23. A pair of long points ending in two Wildcat kills ended the set 25-23, and the match 3-1.

Holly Hafemeyer smashed 12 kills with an uncharacteristically sloppy seven errors and Jordan Spatenka and Courntey Ysker each chipped in with 11 kills apiece.

Marissa Johnson assisted on 48 kills while Julia Witt and Kayla Wallerich tallied 17 and 16 digs, respectively.

The Vikings head back on the road to MSU Moorhead on Friday at 7 p.m.

Courtesy:  Augustana College