PHILADELPHIA - Loyola University Maryland freshman Molly Cichosz and senior Mindy Maloney combined for 36 kills against La Salle University, but the host Explorers closed the La Salle Invitational with a 25-23, 27-25, 16-25, 25-21 victory over the Greyhounds.
Earlier in the day, Loyola (0-3) lost another three-set match, 25-15, 25-19, 18-25, 25-21, to NJIT.
Cichosz tallied 22 kills, becoming the first Loyola freshman to post 20 or more kills in a match since 2004 when Christina Greenup did it twice in matches against Saint Francis (Pennsylvania) University and Marist College.
Maloney, who did not play in the first set of the match against the Explorers, finished with 14 kills, eclipsing her career-high of 13 set last season at home against the U.S. Naval Academy.
In her first three collegiate matches, Cichosz led Loyola with 46 kills, an average of 3.83 per set. Maloney had 32 kills out of the middle for the Greyhounds in the three matches, hitting a team-high .303 in the process.
Loyola held a 19-17 lead in the first set after an attack error by La Salle's Kelly Perillo, but the Explorers (2-2) scored three in a row to take a 20-19 lead. A Cichosz kill swung the serve back to the Greyhounds' side and tied the score at 20-20, but the teams were tied again at 21, 22 and 23 before two La Salle points closed the set in the Explorers' favor.
The Greyhounds again took a lead late in the second set, 22-21, on a Cichosz swing after going up by as many as three earlier in the frame. Two Ashley Felton kills put La Salle back on top, but a Bryanna Davis service miscue tied the set at 23-23.
The teams traded sideouts from there until Rachel Carr had a solo block to end the second set, 27-25, for La Salle.
Loyola never trailed in the third set and led by as many as nine, 20-11, after a La Salle ball-handling error. The Explorers scored four of the next five points, but Loyola allowed La Salle just one more point, and Maloney sent the match to a fourth set with a kill.
La Salle scored the fourth set's first four points and went up 13-4. Loyola clawed back to within two, 22-20, on a Jane Lukas kill, but an Explorers sideout helped them score three of the final four points for the match win.
Loyola outhit the Explorers in the match, recording 56 kills to La Salle's 49, and the Greyhounds hit .259 as opposed to the Explorers' .239, but five fewer attack errors helped La Salle to the win.
Lauren Andersen had 38 assists, five kills, 14 digs and two aces in the match for Loyola, and Anna Eckstein had a career-high 14 digs in her third collegiate match. Lukas registered 10 kills, and Kara Schiffer pulled up 12 digs.
Against NJIT, Loyola lead in the first 10 points of the opening set, but NJIT scored five of six points to gain an advantage. The Greyhounds then reeled off four in a row to lead 10-8 on a combined block by Maloney and Lauren Andersen.
The Highlanders, however, scored six of the next seven and led the rest of the set and all of the second to take a 2-0 lead in the match.
NJIT then went up 16-11 in the third set, but Loyola scored 14 of the final 16 points in the set to force a fourth set. During the 14-2 run, Andersen had two aces and six set assists, while Lukas and Cichosz had two kills each.
Cichosz had a kill to open the fourth set, but 1-0 would be Loyola's only lead of that frame as NJIT tallied five points in a row and nine of 11 to take a commanding lead in the deciding set.
Loyola opens the home portion of its 2014 schedule next weekend when it hosts the Greyhound Challenge presented by Radisson Hotel at Cross Keys and Hunt Valley Inn. The Greyhounds will welcome teams from Dartmouth College, Quinnipiac University and Saint Francis (Pennsylvania) University starting on Friday, Sept. 5.