COMMERCE, Texas – A slow start and a highly efficient opponent proved too much for Northwestern State to overcome on Saturday in a 3-1 (25-9, 25-23, 22-25, 25-12) at Texas A&M-Commerce.
The Lions opened the match with seven service aces paired with an uber efficient offense to cruise to at 25-9 start to the day.
The Lady Demons put the tough opening set behind them quickly jumping out to a 7-2 lead in the second. Reaghan Thompson and Breanna Burrell the first bump of the set with four points in the run, three coming on kills, to give NSU the early advantage.
The Lions worked their way back to even things at 14, trading point for point for the next 11 serves until Burrell supplied three important kills in a 3-1 NSU burst that put the Demons ahead 23-20.
Burrell’s kills had NSU poised to even the match at one set a piece but after a Lion timeout, Commerce rattled off five straight points to steal the set and take the commanding 2-0 lead in the match.
After just one unforced error in the first two sets, the Lions came down to Earth in the third with seven in the set, swinging the door wide open for the Demons to run through.
Symone Wesley stung a kill cross court to move the Demons ahead and immediately followed with an ace to make it an 18-16 game. The combination worked so well, NSU used it again two serves later with Burrell providing the kill and Jordan Gamble the ace. Addison McDermott made it a late four-point game with a kill at 21-17.
The Lions pushed back to make bring the score back within a pair, but one of the 12 attack errors in the set gave NSU set point with the set ending rather unceremoniously on a Lion blocking error two serves later.
Unfortunately for the Demons, Commerce settled back into their offensive flow again in the fourth, jumping ahead 9-4 on five kills. A 7-1 soon after pushed the lead to 17-8 and the Lions didn’t look back from that point, taking the set 25-12.
Thompson finished the day with a team-best 10 kills, adding five blocks to her line. McDermott and Wesley each added nine kills in the match.
NSU returns home for two matches in Prather Coliseum during Homecoming week starting on Thursday night against McNeese.
Photo: Chris Reich, NSU Photographic Services