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The women's volleyball team (13-13) dropped three of their four matches at the Southwestern Tournament in Georgetown, Texas, on Oct. 13 and 14.
On Saturday, the Muskies notched their solo match win against Hardin-Simmons, 3-1 (30-26, 30-20, 11-30, 30-28), thanks in part to a strong match from outside hitters Brittanie Paulus and Ashley Domask, and freshman middle hitter Kim Linger.
Paulus led the team in kills with 12 and chipped in 12 digs on defense, tying junior Rachel Young's defensive effort. Domask paced the defense with 13 digs and added 11 kills at the net. Linger rounded out the top scorers with ten kills, and also added four blocks.
Poor hitting plagued the Muskies in their first match of the tournament on Friday, as they were downed by host Southwestern University, ranked ninth in the nation, 3-1 (12-30, 30-24, 17-30, 10-30), on .006 hitting as a team for the match.
Junior middle hitter Shelly Bruni led all scorers with eight kills, followed by seven kills and 18 digs from Paulus. Sophomore defensive specialist Danielle Swindell also shouldered some of the defensive effort, tallying 16 digs.
In Friday's second match against Ohio Northern, ranked 21st in the nation, the squad put up a fight on defense with five players recording double-digits in digs for a total of 88 as a team, but couldn't quite find the offense to match for a 3-1 loss (36-34, 19-30, 14-30, 27-30).
Linger paced the offense with 12 kills, while Young and Paulus boosted the defense with 19 digs apiece. Domask chipped in ten kills and 16 digs, while sophomore setter Jessica Sparling recorded a tournament-high 44 assists and added 14 digs and nine kills.
Although the squad stayed close with Washington & Lee in their last match of the tournament on Saturday, they were unable to close out a few of the games for a 3-1 loss (23-30, 34-32, 28-30, 26-30).
Domask led all scorers with 13 kills, backed by 11 kills from Paulus and seven from Linger. Freshman Tonia Strebelinski headed up the defense with 16 digs, followed by Paulus with 14 and sophomore Whitney Helbach with 12.
Paulus was named to the All-Tournament team for her efforts.
The Muskies delve back into Northern Athletics Conference action on Wednesday, Oct. 18, against Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wis. Match time is set for 7 p.m.