Share price SAULT STE. MARIE – The Michigan Tech Huskies volleyball team got a big win Friday night, defeating No. 20 Ferris State Bulldogs in Big Rapids for the first time in 14 years. They followed that up Saturday with a five-set loss to the Lake Superior State Lakers.
Despite the division, the Huskies finished fourth in the GLIAC standings and will host Northern Michigan in the GLIAC quarterfinals on Wednesday at 6 p.m.
HUSKIES TOP BULLDOGS FRIDAY
BIG RAPIDS, Mich. – The Huskies bounced back from a 2-0 deficit with a 3-2 GLIAC victory over Ferris State on Friday. The Huskies won 15-25, 23-25, 25-22, 26-24, and 15-12 to hand the Bulldogs their first GLIAC loss of the season and earn their first win in Big Rapids in 14 years.
“What a great comeback for our Huskies,” Huskies coach Matt Jennings said after the first win in Big Rapids. “I couldn’t be more proud of this team than I am right now, especially the way we fought for the game. Ferris is a good team that doesn’t lose much at home. For us to be down two sets and on their court and win is a testament to our team’s character and unwillingness to give up.
“We talked a lot about not losing when we’re not good this week in training and you play if we keep going and stay close, you’ll have a chance to come and make a difference. FINISH. It felt like that today. We started slow and sloppy, but by the end, we were playing big games and had a good team after that. “
Trailing 2-0 after a tight second set, the Huskies fought back with seven straight in the third and led by three. The home team used a 5-1 run to take a 21-20 lead. The teams traded points before Tech went on a 4-0 run to get on the board. Meg Raabe had the final kill combined with two errors for the Bulldogs.
Tech tied the game in overtime in the fourth. Tech set up a field goal before the Bulldogs added. A service error put the Huskies back on top, then Kaycee Meiners hit a kill to send it to the fifth set.
The Huskies went on a 6-1 run in the fifth set to take a 9-5 lead. The home team responded with a 5-1 rally to cut it to one point at 13-12. Tess Hayes had a kill for the match, and Meiners finished the victory with a shot that went off the defense and into the back wall.
The Huskies had an offensive attack as Raabe (15), Rachel Zurek (14), and Meiners (11) had two kills apiece. Hayes hit 50 assists for the sixth time this season, hitting 51 kills over 1,000 assists in his freshman season. She added 10 double-double digs.
Amelia Albers (16), Alayna Corwin (15), and Brook Dzwik (15) also had two digs. Meiners (1 solo, 3 block assists), Zurek (1BS, 2 BA), Tricia Kennedy (3 BA), and Lindy Oujiri (2BA) were all strong on the block.
“Rachel and Kaycee were the best tonight,” Jennings said. “When we were able to get them the ball, we were very hard to beat. Rachel was running the whole game on offense and Kaycee was as consistent as ever, especially in the last three sets. Lindy dug deep in this one and played five sets on the nose. We don’t win without that leadership.”
Ferris hit .324 in the first set and used an 11-3 run to take command of the opening frame.
The Huskies took the lead in the second half before the Bulldogs closed in on a 5-1 run to take a 2-0 lead into halftime.
HUSKIES PLAY AT LAKERS SATURDAY
The Huskies fell 3-2 to Lake Superior State in the regular season finale on Saturday. The Lakers won the first set, and the teams traded shots from there with the home team winning 15-8 in the fifth.
With the win, LSSU re-entered the postseason as the 8th seed and will travel to Grand Valley State.
“This weekend is the perfect match for the rest of the season,” Jennings said. “We go back and sweep a nationally ranked team on the road and come out and throw the ball against a team that is fighting to make the championship. Credit to Coach Zach and his team. They played really well and scored a lot of points against us. We couldn’t stop them when we needed to and we came out on top. lazily for reasons I am not sure of.”
LSSU led most of the first half and outscored the Huskies 17-11 for the 25-19 victory. Five different Lakers had at least two kills. Raabe had five kills for Tech.
The Huskies tied the second 25-23. Tech never walked and got six kills from Raabe and four from Oujiri.
The Lakers built an eight-point lead in the third. The Huskies held off three quarters before Emilee McDaniel’s layup to give the home team a 25-22 victory. Raabe and Oujiri combined for 13 kills.
The Black and Gold forced the fifth set after forcing the Lakers into 10 errors and five blocks. LSSU had five straight errors early in the set and Oujiri put up the final two points for a 25-18 technical win.
There were three early ties in the fifth set before the Lakers broke away with a 4-0 run and closed on a 6-1 run to win.
Raabe had 26 kills and added 13 digs and five assists. Oujiri added 15 kills while Meiners had six kills, eight assists, and just three blocks.
Hayes led the attack with 50 assists and added 12 digs. Albers (19), Corwin (16), and Dzwik (14) also had double figures.
Other early GLIAC matchups include No. 7 Purdue Northwest at No. 2 Ferris State and No. 6 Davenport at No. 3 Parkside.