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Northern Michigan University Wildcats’ volleyball season ends in GLIAC Tournament semifinals

Sarah Kuehn

BIG RAPIDS — The season came to a sudden end for the Northern Michigan University volleyball team as the Wildcats lost in the semifinals of the GLIAC Tournament to Michigan Tech on Saturday afternoon.

Playing at Ferris State, the Huskies prevailed 25-19, 25-22, 25-23.

NMU (13-16) was one of two underdogs in the semifinals as the No. 6 seed after the Wildcats pulled off a quarterfinal upset at No. 3 Ashland, Ohio, in five sets on Wednesday.

Tech was the No. 2 seed with the host Bulldogs No. 1. Ferris proved a worthy regular-season champion by beating MTU Sunday in three sets in the championship match.

On Saturday, NMU jumped out to an 11-9 lead in the second set before Tech got hot and went up 17-12. Three straight Tech errors pulled the Wildcats within 20-18, then three straight kills by NMU senior Sarah Kuehn left her team down just 22-21. A kill by sophomore Lizzy Stark kept NMU within 24-22 before MTU’s Anna Jonynas made a set-ending kill.

Lizzy Stark

Northern jumped out to a 7-1 lead in the third. Tech worked its way back before tying it several times. Tech got a couple points to go ahead, then NMU freshman Lauren Van Remortel served an ace to get Northern within 24-23. But the Wildcats’ season ended on an attack error.

Stark led NMU with 12 kills and 15 digs, while sophomore Abigail Durecki had nine kills and three blocks. Kuehn had seven kills and three blocks, while Van Remortel finished with 32 assists.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.