PUEBLO, Colo. (November 8, 2016) – Despite a dominant performance by Caitlin Broadwell, Colorado State University-Pueblo Volleyball could not take down Adams State University Tuesday night at Massari Arena. The Grizzlies won in five sets (25-21, 20-25, 21 -25, 25-22, 15-11).
With a chance to earn the inside track to their third consecutive Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference Tournament, the Pack faltered and now owns a 9-8 mark in RMAC matches. CSU-Pueblo fell to 11-14 overall. The Grizzlies now hold that inside track for the seventh spot in the RMAC Tournament with a 10-7 conference record and a 15-11 overall record.
Broadwell (Jr., Lawrence, Kan.) delivered 25 kills and 17 digs, both of which were career-highs. She earned her fourth double-double of the season. Broadwell hit .263 for the match and blocked two attacks. She beat her previous highs by five kills and six digs.
Senior Katie Burnett (Austin, Texas) broke the CSU-Pueblo single-season digs record with 22 digs. She now has 491 digs on the season, breaking the previous record of 484 held by Burnett and Ashley Michel. Burnett now has 20 or more digs in six of her last seven matches.
Playing at Massari Arena for the final time, Tanja Ranilovic (Sr., Belgrade, Serbia) led the Pack with a .389 hitting percentage. Ranilovic knocked down nine kills, matching her season-high. She also chipped in four blocks and three digs.
Senior Megan Schultz (Colorado Springs, Colo.) finished her final home match with seven blocks and six digs. Schultz also had five kills. The senior led the Pack with two service aces.
In her first career start, ShiAnn Rodriguez (R-Fr., Pueblo, Colo.) finished with 20 digs and seven kills. Both of these set career-highs for Rodriguez. She added three blocks on the night.
Pack setter Elena Michalski (Jr., Longmont, Colo.) collected her second double-double in as many matches with 24 assists and 14 digs. Michalski now has seven double-doubles this season.
Freshman Kelsey Bell (Los Lunas, N.M.) led the Pack with 26 assists. Bell finished with eight digs. She also added a service ace.
Junior Misha McDowell (Gilbert, Ariz.) totaled a career-high eight blocks. Two of McDowell's blocks were solo rejections. She had four kills on the night.
The two teams traded runs throughout the first set. With a 22-21 lead, the Grizzlies embarked on 3-0 run that gave them the first set 25-21. Broadwell had eight kills in the first set. Michalski added eight digs.
Adams seized a 10-4 lead early in the second set, thanks to an 8-1 run. The Pack would rally with a 13-5 stretch the put them up 17-15. The Grizzlies tied the match at 18. CSU-Pueblo responded with a 7-2 run capped by a Schultz block that tied the match at one set apiece. Broadwell had seven more kills in the second.
Set three remained close. With the Pack up 17-16, the ThunderWolves unleashed a 6-1 run that would put them up 23-17. The Grizzlies tried to rally, but an emphatic Broadwell kill gave the pack 25-20 set win and a 2-1 lead.
The fourth set belonged to the Grizzlies. They built a 10-6 lead thanks to a six-point run. Though the Pack would close within one twice during the fourth set, including late in the set when a Broadwell kill made it 23-22. However, the Grizzlies held off the ThunderWolves for a 25-22 win in set four. This forced a fifth and decisive game.
In the fifth set, the Grizzlies staked themselves to a 10-5 lead. The Pack battled back within one, thanks to a four-point run. After the two teams traded points again, the Pack trailed 11-10. The Grizzlies would score four of the next five points to close out the win 15-11 in a dramatic fashion.
Even in defeat, the Pack outhit the Grizzlies .166-.155. CSU-Pueblo also held a 16-8 advantage in total blocks.
Now, the Pack will root for the Grizzlies this Saturday when they meet Western State Colorado University. With both teams tied at 10-7 in conference matches, a Pack win and a Western State loss would send CSU-Pueblo to its third straight RMAC Tournament.
For the Pack to qualify for postseason play, they need to defeat Westminster College Saturday on the road. The ThunderWolves' regular season finale begins at 4 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