ALLENDALE, MICH. – The Northwood University volleyball team dropped a tough 3-2 contest at Grand Valley State Friday night (November 6). Set scores were 25-18, 23-25, 16-25, 26-24, 15-8.
Northwood falls to 11-14 overall, 7-7 in the GLIAC. Grand Valley State improves to 16-9 overall, 10-4 in the GLIAC.
GVSU finished the opening set strong to take a 1-0 lead. The Lakers led 16-15 when Grand Valley State a 9-3 run to finish, which included a 7-1 stretch. Ten attack errors for Northwood, thanks in large part to six Laker blocks, were too much to overcome for the Timberwolves. For the set, NU ended up hitting .023 (11-10-43) while GVSU finished at .209 (13-4-43).
The Lakers were on the cusp of going up 2-0, leading the second set 22-20. But that is when the Timberwolves responded, scoring three straight points to take the lead at 23-22. After GVSU earned a point, the Timberwolves got kills from Allison Getty (Wayland, Mich.) and Krysta Kramer (Lansing, Mich./Grand Ledge) to take the set 25-23. Northwood's offense was much improved in the second set, hitting .293 (15-3-41). GVSU also hit well in the frame, ending up at .302 (17-2-43).
Northwood continued their strong play in the third set, scoring 10 of the first 13 points to break things open. Grand Valley State got no closer than five points the rest of the set. NU's defense stepped up in the third, holding GVSU to a .070 mark in the frame (10-7-43). The Timberwolves finished at .237 in the set (13-4-38).
The fourth set featured big runs for both teams. The Lakers scored 10 of the first 12 points in the set, only to see the Timberwolves going on an 8-2 run to make the score 12-10. Grand Valley had a 5-1 run to make the score 22-15, but Northwood responded with a big run. The Timberwolves scored eight straight points and nine of the next 10 points to have a match point at 24-23. But it was the Lakers who had the final run of the set, scoring the final three points to take the set 26-24 and level the match 2-2. The two teams struggled offensively in the set – both teams ended up hitting .019 (NU 12-11-54, GV 9-8-52).
After Northwood scored the opening three points in the fifth set, Grand Valley State went on the final run that proved to be the difference in the match. The Lakers scored eight straight points, opening up a five-point lead at 8-3. The Timberwolves got no closer than four points the rest of the way. GVSU hit .375 (10-1-24) while Northwood finished at -.040 (4-5-25) in the fifth.
For the match, Northwood hit .109 (55-33-201) while the Lakers ended up at .171 (59-24-205). The Timberwolves out-dug GVSU 111-100, but Grand Valley finished with an 18-6 edge in blocks.
Kramer led the way for Northwood, finishing with 15 kills, three blocks, two aces and 18 digs. Getty added 13 kills and 23 digs. Kiana Martinez (Hubbard, Ohio) registered a career-high 33 digs.
Northwood will travel to Ferris State Saturday (November 7). First serve is set for 3 p.m.