Wildcats spikers win 1 of 3 at Keweenaw Classic

By Journal Sports Staff

HOUGHTON — The Northern Michigan University volleyball team dropped a pair of matches Friday after winning its season opener on Thursday at the Keweenaw Classic hosted by Michigan Tech.

The Wildcats pulled out a five-set victory Thursday vs. the University of Mary, 25-17, 11-25, 25-17, 16-25, 15-9.

Sophomore Lizzy Stark paced NMU with 21 kills while freshman Abigail Durecki had 11 in her debut, hitting at a .333 clip. Another freshman, Lauren Van Remortel, posted 43 assists, while sophomore Alli Yacko had team highs of 24 digs and three service aces.

On Friday, Northern lost a pair of four-set matches. Upper Iowa won in the morning, 25-15, 22-25, 25-20, 25-12, then in the afternoon, No. 9 Southwest Minnesota State won 26-24, 25-15, 24-26, 25-20.

Stark paced the attack Friday with 30 kills in the two matches. Sophomore Hailey Wickstrom of Calumet added 24 kills and led the team with a .358 hitting percentage. Each had 13 kills vs. SMSU.

Senior Sarah Kuehn posted 14 kills and 11 blocks on the day, while Durecki tallied eight kills, seven blocks and a team-high three aces, six vs. SMSU.

Van Remortal finished with 36 assists, while sophomore Abby Fortune had 34. And sophomore Lauren Caprini tallied a team-best 29 digs as Stark had 25 and senior Cheyanna Pyka added 21.

The Wildcats have one more match in the Keweenaw Classic against Minnesota-Crookston at 5 p.m. today before traveling to the UIndy Invitational in Indianapolis starting Friday for four more matches.

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