The University of Minnesota Morris volleyball team wasted little time in dispatching Crown College on Tuesday night at Jim Gremmels Court, sweeping the Storm, 3-0 (25-16, 25-16, 25-11). The win improves the Cougars to 10-9 (6-2 UMAC) on the season.
With the score tied at 1-1 in the first set, a pair of kills from Jenna Howden and an ace from Alyssa Ukestad helped Minnesota Morris score six straight to take a 7-1 edge. The closest Crown got after that was within four, but UMN Morris was never in danger. Lydia Nash scored the final three points of the set for the Cougars as they took a 1-0 lead in the match.
Another hot start to the second set saw Laura Wellbrock notch a pair of kills to start and Howden later added three in a row to give Minnesota Morris a 6-0 lead. The margin swelled to as much as 19-6 following a pair of kills from Brooke Christensen, though Crown was able to then score six in a row to close the gap slightly. The Cougars closed out the set with kills from Paige Hinze and Sydney Eckhoff, plus a pair of aces from Emma Olson.
With UMN Morris ahead, 4-2, in the third, the Cougars blew the match open with eight straight points to go on top, 12-2. Sydney Petersen had three kills late in that rally. As the set progressed, Minnesota Morris continued to lead comfortably and the Cougars scored the final three points on a kill from Petersen, a kill from Kennedy Geller, and an ace from Petersen to close it out.
Minnesota Morris hit .284 as a team on the night compared to .011 for Crown. The Storm had only 16 kills total in the match, while the Cougars had 15 kills in the first set and 16 kills in both the second and third sets. Howden led all players in the match with nine kills. Geller and Nash added seven, Wellbrock had six, and Petersen had five. McKenzie Newton handed out 31 assists. Ukestad came up with 24 digs.
The Cougars are back home on Friday night, hosting North Central University at 7 p.m.