WORCESTER, Mass. - Loyola University Maryland volleyball had set-point in two sets, and late leads in all three, Saturday evening at College of the Holy Cross, but the Crusaders came away with a three-set Patriot League victory, 26-24, 29-27, 25-23.
Stacey Kazalas led the Greyhounds (6-21 overall, 1-10 Patriot League) with 13 kills, including three in a row near the end of the opening set; her third put the Greyhounds up, 24-23, but Jenna Price, Natalie Welsch and Mary Mullen each had kills for the Crusaders (6-19, 3-9) to put Holy Cross up a set after one.
The Cruaders took a 19-17 second-set lead after a Loyola service error, but Alisah Cash had back-to-back kills for the Greyhounds, and a Holy Cross attack miscue gave Loyola a 20-19 advantage.
Mandy Sifferlen sided out for Holy Cross with a kill at 20-20, but a Crusaders service error gave the Greyhounds a one-point lead. Haley Puddy and Molly Cichosz then locked up a block for the Greyhounds, and Micah Duzey made it 23-20 in favor of Loyola with a service ace.
The teams traded sideouts with a Kazalas kill giving Loyola its first set-point of the second, 24-21. Holy Cross scored three in a row, but a Cichosz swing for a kill pushed Loyola up, 25-24.
Two Crusaders points put the Greyhounds at a set-point disadvantage, but Kazalas came through with a kill to tie the score at 27-27 before two Loyola attack errors gave the set to Holy Cross.
Cichosz broke an 11-11 third-set tie with a kill, starting a 5-0 Loyola run that would put the Greyhounds ahead, 16-11, on a Puddy kill; Kazalas later made it 18-13 Loyola with a kill.
Holy Cross, however, scored seven of the next nine points to tie the score at 20-20 on a Sifferlen ace. Kazalas sided out for the lead with a kill, and a Price attack went wide to made the Greyhounds’ advantage two, 22-20.
The Crusaders got the serve back with a Loyola hitting error, but Molly Werts put away a kill for a point at 23-21. That was the last Greyhounds’ point of the night, however, as Holy Cross scored the final four to close the match.
In addition to Kazalas’ team-high 13 kills, Jane Lukas hit .417 and had six on just 12 swings. Werts posted a double-double with 16 assists and 13 digs, and Puddy led Loyola with five blocks.
Welsch posted 14 kills without an error in 25 swings, and Sifferlen had 13 kills and 15 digs for the Crusaders.
Loyola returns to Reitz Arena next weekend for two matches. The Greyhounds host Bucknell University on Saturday night and Colgate University the following afternoon.