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Northern spikers upset No. 1-ranked Ferris State

MARQUETTE – Northern Michigan University’s women’ volleyball team stunned No. 1-ranked Ferris State in a tight, five-set match Saturday afternoon at Vandament Arena

“I’m so proud of our team,” Northern head coach Dominic Yoder said. “We had a rigid game plan that we executed flawlessly.”

The Wildcats downed the Bulldogs, who were previously unbeaten in GLIAC play, in the decisive fifth set, 15-8.

With the teams knotted at three apiece in that frame, the Wildcats won three-straight points with senior Lisa Studnicka serving to pull ahead and then never allowed Ferris State back to within a point.

After the Wildcats dropped the first set, 25-23, they regrouped to win the second in commanding fashion, 25-12.

In that second frame, NMU built a 21-11 lead by winning eight-straight points with senior Alex Berger serving.

The Bulldogs regrouped to win the third set by the same margin as the first, but the Wildcats forced the decisive fifth set by posting a 25-21 win in the fourth.

Overall, Northern held Ferris State to a .061 hitting percentage, including -.061 and -.067 percentages in the fourth and fifth sets.

The Wildcats recorded a hitting percentage of .229 in the contest

Madison Whitehead paced the Wildcats with a career-high 26 kills.

“Whitehead put in a national Player of the Week performance against the best team in the nation,” Yoder said.

NMU’s Kayla Chosa also reached the double digits in kills with 17. Jami Hogeboom hit the 50-assist mark for the fourth time this season.

Defensively, Berger (28) and Studnicka (22) reached the 20-dig plateau.

As a team, the Wildcats totaled 18 blocks to stymie the Ferris State attack.

“Our seniors were tremendous,” Yoder said. “Chosa and Hogeboom were also spot-on. There were many other contributions to the team’s success.”

Northern returns to the court at 7:07 p.m. Tuesday when it faces rival Michigan Tech in Houghton

NMU kickers

beat Tech

On a wet and chilly day, the Northern Michigan University women’s soccer team rallied for a 2-1 victory over Michigan Tech Saturday at the NMU Soccer Field.

Allyssa Milam notched the winning goal in the 69th minute of play, converting a Paula Hafner corner kick.

“It was a good game against a quality Tech team,” Northern head coach Matt Granstrand said.

“I’m proud of my team and their effort … .”

The Wildcats (7-9 overall, 7-5 GLIAC) and Huskies traded shots on net throughout the first half of play.

Lexi Herrewig was able to score off of a pass from Jannelle Riedl to put Tech ahead, 1-0, at the halfway point.

The Wildcats’ Carmen Villarruel wasted no time evening the score in the second half when she was able score off a Hafner pass in the 48th minute of play.

Northern goalkeeper Alexandra Simmons came up with two saves late in the game to nullify a Tech attempt to tie the game.

She posted seven saves in the contest.

Michigan Tech outshot Northern, 14-11.

The Wildcats had the advantage in corner kicks, 6-4.

NMU swimmers lose

The NMU men’s and women’s swimming/diving teams lost a dual meet Saturday afternoon to host Grand Valley State.

The Laker men came out on top, 156-87, while the women posted a 158-85 victory over the Wildcats.

“This was a great day of competition for us,” Northern head coach Heidi Voigt said.

“Grand Valley is one of the top teams in the nation and I’m so proud of our athletes today.”

Northern’s Rachel Borchardt came from behind in the last length to win the 500 freestyle, clocking in at 5:16.43.

Teammate Savanna Saunders won the 200 backstroke in 2:06.85.

In the 1-meter diving event, the Wildcats’ Molly Kearney remained undefeated, earning the win with a score of 269.09.

Angela Probstfeld, who finished second to Kearney with a score of 264.89, qualified for the NCAA Championships.

For the NMU men, Grantas Dapkus won the 1000 freestyle (9:34.61) and 500 free (4:43.32), while Ryan Knox-Leonard took the 200 IM (1:55.29) and 200 backstroke (1:49.16).

Dapkus’s time in the 1000 freestyle made the NCAA B cut while Knox-Leonard’s 200 backstroke time set a pool record and made the NCAA B cut.

Information compiled by Senior Sports Writer Craig Remsburg. He can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 251, or via email at cremsburg@miningjournal.net.