John Murphy, Sports Information Assistant
CHADRON – Freshman Aracely Hernandez had 17 kills and junior Brooke Gardner had 15 to help the Eagles defeat Colorado State University-Pueblo in four sets Friday night, 25-18, 20-25, 25-20, 25-22.
CSC hit .192, compared to the Thunderwolves .147, and had 14 more digs as a team. In the fourth set, the Eagles hit its best of the night with an attack percentage of .295 and led in every statistical category except blocks.
“We always preach to finish stronger than you start and we definitely did that tonight,” Head Volleyball Coach Riann Mullis said.
Hernandez hit .341 and Gardner hit .209, while Chandler Hageman had 11 kills and hit .188.
Five different Eagles had double-digit digs, led by Ashton Burditt with 22. Hernandez and Karli Noble each had 17, Mickey Trimble had 15 and Madison Webb had 12. Webb also recorded 49 assists.
The Thunderwolves were led by Brooke Schilling with 13 kills. Mallorie Post and Berkley Hays each had ten. Setter Grace Hern had 34 assists and Page Heller recorded 27 digs to each lead CSU-Pueblo.
In set one, trailing 9-6, the Eagles scored eight straight points to take the lead on the way to victory. During set three, CSC took the lead 2-1 and never trailed again.
Ten ties and six lead changes made an exciting fourth set, in which Hernadez had seven of her 17 kills.
With the win, the Eagles record climbs to 6-14 and 4-7 in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.
The Eagles host New Mexico Highlands tomorrow night in the Chicoine Center. First serve is scheduled for 6 p.m.
“Tomorrow night we need to block better and have a sense of urgency at the net,” Mullis said. “Highlands is an aggressive team and we need to match that.”