PUEBLO, Colo. – The Colorado State University-Pueblo volleyball team (9-7, 3-4 RMAC) jumped out to a one set lead against No. 20 Colorado Mesa University, but the Mavericks rallied to win the next three sets to defeat the ThunderWolves, 3-1 (23-25, 25-20, 25-19, 25-19), Friday at Massari Arena.
The loss snaps the Pack's two-match winning streak and lowers their record to 9-7 overall and 3-4 in Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference tilts. With the victory, Colorado Mesa improves to 12-3 on the season and 6-1 in league contests.
The Mavericks owned the statistical advantage in hitting percentage, .231 to .162, kills, 61-50, assists, 56-47, and blocks, 10-9. Both squads registered 71 digs. It was the first time in seven RMAC matches this season that CSU-Pueblo has been out blocked by its opponent.
Alex Sansavera (R-Jr., San Antonio, Texas) and Jordan Bruere (Jr., Rio Rancho, N.M.) both tallied double-doubles to lead the Pack. Sansavera recorded a team-high 20 assists to go along with 10 digs for her seventh double-double of the year, while Bruere notched 16 assists and 11 digs for her ninth double-double of the season. Oni Lattin (Jr., Houston, Texas) recorded a team-leading and season-high 13 kills, while matching Alex Winkler (So., Colorado Springs, Colo.) for the team-high in blocks with four. Katie Burnett (So., Austin, Texas) tallied 17 digs to pace the ThunderWolves.
For the Mavericks, Audrey Steinkirchner had a match-high 20 kills thanks largely to Jordyn Moody's contest-best 50 assists. Tiffany Petersen led both squads wit 22 digs, while Abby Ney posted a match-high seven blocks.
In the opening set, the ThunderWolves never trailed en route to a 25-23 victory. CSU-Pueblo jumped out to an 11-6 advantage, only to see Colorado Mesa battled back to trim the lead to one on four separate occasions and finally tying the score at 23 apiece. The Pack remained calm, tallying the final two points of the frame to take a 1-0 lead in the match. The ThunderWolves posted a solid .300 hitting percentage in set one to help propel them to an early lead in the contest.
Set two was the opposite of the first set. The Mavericks never trailed as they went on to win 25-20. Just like the Pack did in set one, Colorado Mesa needed to fend off a furious rally attempt by the ThunderWolves to earn the win. After falling behind 19-15, CSU-Pueblo fought back to even the set at 19, forcing a Mavericks' timeout. Colorado Mesa outscored the ThunderWolves, 6-1, the remainder of the stanza to even the match at one set apiece.
Set three was tight early on and was tied at 15 mid way through the stanza. The Mavericks used a 10-4 scoring run to close the frame en route to a 25-19 set win and a 2-1 lead in the match.
Facing defeat, the ThunderWolves came out strong in the fourth set, racing out to a 10-6 advantage. Colorado Mesa went on a 12-3 spurt to catapult into the lead, at 18-13. CSU-Pueblo climbed to within three, at 21-18, but wasn't able to complete the comeback as the Mavericks held on to win, 25-19, earning a 3-1 match victory.
The Pack returns to action Saturday with a 2 p.m. match against For Lewis College at Massari Arena.
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As a member of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, Colorado State University – Pueblo competes in 22 varsity sports in NCAA Division II intercollegiate athletics.