LAKEWOOD, Colo. (CCU Events Center) – The Colorado State University-Pueblo volleyball team (11-9, 5-5 RMAC) jumped out to an early 2-0 advantage against host Colorado Christian University, but the Cougars rallied to win the final three sets to edge the ThunderWolves, 3-2, Tuesday.
The Pack drop to 11-9 overall on the season, while Colorado Christian improves to 12-8. CSU-Pueblo falls to 1-3 in five-set matches. Despite both teams being a part of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, the contest did not count toward either squad's league record.
For the match, the Cougars out hit the Pack, .354 to .170, while recording 80 kills to the visitors' 58. Colorado Christian also held the edge in assists, 75-54, digs, 98-79, and blocks, 8-7.
The ThunderWolves' Mariangel Perez (So., Catia La Mar, Venezuela) recorded her 13th double-double of the season, notching a team-best 13 kills and 15 assists. Jordan Bruere (Jr., Rio Rancho, N.M.) tallied a season-high 29 assists, while Morgan Wilkening (Jr., Fleming, Colo.) registered a team-best 22 digs. Oni Lattin (Houston, Texas) led both teams with six blocks.
For the Cougars, Kaylee Pierce tallied a contest-best 22 digs, while Jordan Kessler paced both teams with 62 assists. Joelle LeFevre notched a match-high 30 digs from the libero position. Angela Jurek finished with a team-best five blocks.
In the opening set, the ThunderWolves jumped out to an early 7-5 advantage. The Cougars surged in front with an 8-1 scoring spurt, taking a 13-8 lead. The Pack responded with a scoring run of their own, tying the match at 19 apiece. The remainder of the game was neck-and-neck with CSU-Pueblo fending off set-point, at 24-23, and recording the final three points off of kills by Perez to go ahead 1-0 in the match.
The second set was tightly contested as neither team held a lead greater than four points. Late in the game, the Pack found themselves trailing 21-17. Just like it did in the first stanza, CSU-Pueblo finished the set strong, outscoring the Cougars, 9-3, the rest of the way to earn another 26-24 win and a 2-0 match lead.
Colorado Christian bounced back to tie the match at two apiece after wins in the third (25-16) and fourth (25-11) sets. In the fifth and deciding set, CSU-Pueblo trailed by just two (7-5) mid-way through the frame, but the Cougars used a 8-2 run to close the set and the match.
The ThunderWolves travel to New Mexico for a pair of weekend RMAC matches. The Pack face Western New Mexico University, Friday, before squaring off against New Mexico Highlands University, Saturday. Both contests are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.
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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.