Volleyball bests Western New Mexico, 3-1

Volleyball bests Western New Mexico, 3-1

SILVER CITY, N.M. (Drag's Court) ~ The Colorado State University-Pueblo volleyball team (12-9, 6-5 RMAC) bounced back from a tough five-set loss in its last outing, overcoming a 1-0 to deficit to down Western New Mexico University, 3-1 (15-25, 25-20, 25-23, 25-21), in Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference action, Friday.

The ThunderWolves halt a two-match losing skid and collect just their second victory of the season when dropping the first set. The Pack improve to 12-9 overall and move one match over .500, at 6-5, in RMAC play. The win is just the third in the last 11 meetings for CSU-Pueblo against the Mustangs. Western New Mexico drops to 6-12 overall on the season and 3-9 in league play.

For the match, CSU-Pueblo held the statistical advantage in blocks, 13-8, hitting percentage, .173 to .123, and digs, 72-70. The Mustangs owned the slight edge in kills, 48-47, and assists, 43-42.

Mariangel Perez (So., Catia La Mar, Venezuela) and Alex Sansavera (R-Jr., San Antonio, Texas) each notched a double-double for the ThunderWolves. Perez recorded 12 kills and matched teammate Katie Burnett (So., Austin, Texas) for the team lead in digs with 17 for her 14th double-double of the season. Sansavera tallied her ninth double-double of the year after notching a match-high 25 assists and 14 digs. Morgan Wilkening (Jr., Fleming, Colo.) paced both squads with 14 kills, while Oni Lattin (Jr., Houston, Texas) posted a career-high nine blocks.

Leeta Grap registered a team-leading 11 kills for Western New Mexico, while Melanie Hughes had a team-best 21 assists. Barbara Soranzo notched 19 digs to top the Mustangs. Shannon Rich had a team-high five blocks for the home team.

The first set was all Western New Mexico as the Mustangs never trailed en route to a convincing 25-15 set one victory.

The Pack bounced back strong in the second game. CSU-Pueblo turned an early 9-6 deficit into a 17-10 lead thanks to an 11-1 scoring run. The Mustangs pulled within three at 23-20, but that's as close as they would get as the ThunderWolves evened the contest at one set apiece with a 25-20 win.

The critical third set was neck-and-neck throughout the entirety of the stanza. The Pack held a 14-10 lead only to see the home team rally to jump ahead 19-18. CSU-Pueblo outscored the Mustangs 7-4 to close the set and earn a 25-23 win and a 2-1 match lead.

In the fourth set, Western New Mexico once again held a slim advantage late in the match at 18-17. For the second consecutive game, the ThunderWolves finished strong, ripping off an 8-3 scoring spurt to win 25-21 and close the match with a three sets to one advantage.

The Pack returns to action Saturday versus New Mexico Highlands University. Match time against the Cowgirls is slated for 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.