BETHLEHEM, Pa. - Loyola University Maryland volleyball led Lehigh University late in the first set and pulled within a point in the second, but the Mountain Hawks held off the Greyhounds for a 25-23, 25-23, 25-11, victory in Loyola’s Patriot League opener.
A Corri Waters kill in the first put Loyola (5-10 overall, 0-1 Patriot League) in front, 19-18, but Whitney Krantz put away a kill for Lehigh (8-8, 1-1) to even the score.
The Mountain Hawks then forced two-straight Loyola attack errors to go up two, but the Greyhounds drew even at 21-21 after a service error and ball-handling error by Lehigh.
Ana Vrhel, however, sided out for the Mountain Hawks with a kill, and she pushed the Lehigh lead ahead by two, 23-21, with a service ace. Molly Cichosz sided out for Loyola with a kill to make it a one-point Lehigh lead, but Leah Turner responded in kind for the Mountain Hawks to push Lehigh to set-point, 24-22.
Stacey Kazalas put away a kill for Loyola to get the Greyhounds back within a point, but Turner ended the frame with another kill, giving Lehigh a 1-0 advantage in the match.
Lehigh took a six-point lead, 22-16, in the second set on a Krantz kill, but a Mountain Hawks service error put the serve back on Loyola’s side. Haley Puddy and Kazalas had solo blocks on consecutive points to draw the Greyhounds within three, 22-19, and Lehigh was charged with a ball-handling error to make it a two-point difference.
Stephanie Slater had a kill for the Mountain Hawks to give Lehigh a 23-20 lead, but Puddy and Waters had consecutive kills for Loyola, cutting the Greyhounds deficit to one, 23-22.
Lehigh, however, was able to sideout on a Loyola service error before Kazalas had a kill to make the set-two score 24-23. Turner, again, came through with a kill for Lehigh to end the set.
Puddy and Kazalas led Loyola with 11 kills each while Cichosz had seven. Puddy hit .500 and also had three total blocks. Turner posted a team-high 12 kills at a .526 clip for Lehigh.
The Greyhounds continue their trip to the Lehigh Valley with a 2 p.m. match on Saturday at Lafayette College.