BEMIDJI, MN -- A great passing rhythm combined with a banner match by sophomore Samantha Lovell allowed the University of Sioux Falls volleyball team to earn its eighth sweep of the season, defeating Bemidji State on the road in three sets (25-22, 29-27, 25-18).

The Cougars evened their record at 10-10 (2-9, NSIC) while the Beavers fall to 3-15 overall and 1-10 in league play.

The win also snapped the Cougars' five match losing streak.

Lovell had an outstanding match, leading the Cougars on the floor with 11 kills, hitting .429 with six blocks for a team-high 15 points. Senior middle blocker Sarah Kohler posted 11 kills on a .320 hitting clip with three blocks for 12.5 points.

Junior setter Alexa Reed steered the USF offense with 30 assists and eight digs and showed off her attack skills with five kills and three blocks. Junior libero Andrea Odbert scooped 11 digs.

The squads traded the first 12 points of set one before the Cougars moved in front 8-6 with a Lovell stuff and a kill by Emily Johnson. The Beavers would knot the set at 10-10 and the frame saw ties of 11-11, 13-13,15-15 and 17-17 before the Cougars were gifted two points off of BSU attack errors and took the 19-17 lead. USF quickly made it 23-19 with a rejection by Reed and Chanda Goedken and clinched the set 25-22 on a Beaver hitting miscue.

The Cougars rattled off three straight points to open the second frame behind a Kohler kill but the Beavers went on a 10-2 spurt to own the 10-5 advantage. USF rallied with four consecutive points on two Lovell kills and a pair of BSU errors to cut it to 10-9, but the Beavers scored four of the next five points to lead 14-10 and force a USF timeout. The Cougars came out firing after the timeout, going on an 8-4 rally to knot the set at 18-all. The teams battled neck-and-neck and divvied up the next dozen points to send the frame into extras. The Beavers were a point away three times, as they held serve at 25-24, 26-25 and 27-26 but the Cougars tied it at 27-27 with a Reed kill before a bad set by the Beavers handed USF the 28-27 lead. A Johnson/Lovell block put an exclamation point on the 29-27 second set victory.

The third set was tied 4-4 before a 7-1 run kept the momentum with the Purple and White as BSU burned a timeout with the Cougars leading 11-5. USF did not let up and held as much as an eight-point advantage before a Beaver error titled the third frame in the Cougars' favor, 25-18.

The Cougars out-hit the Beavers, .232-.093 in the match. USF owned an 11-6 advantage in blocks and won every other statistical category but digs (46-42) and service aces (4-3).
USF will host Southwest Minnesota State on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Courtesy:  University of Sioux Falls