Denver, South Dakota Advance to #SummitVB Championship

Denver, South Dakota Advance to #SummitVB Championship

The Basics
Score: No. 1 Denver 3, No. 5 Oral Roberts 0
Records: Denver (22-7), South Dakota (17-15)
Location: Hamilton Gymnasium – Denver, Colo.

DENVER – The Denver Pioneers clinched a spot in The Summit League Volleyball Championship match as they defeated the fifth-seeded Oral Roberts Golden Eagles by a score of 3-0 (26-24, 25-19, 25-12) Saturday night at Hamilton Gymnasium. It will be Denver's fourth appearance in the final in as many season as a member of The Summit League.

Oral Roberts trailed 4-1 early in the first set. ORU would tie the set at 5-5, before Denver would go on a 4-0 run. The Golden Eagles and the Pioneers would have the final tie at 22-22. DU would push the final three points.

ORU started the second set strong with a 6-2 lead. Denver and Oral Roberts would tie nine times before DU would break the final tie ending the second set on a 5-0 run.

Denver carried that momentum into the third and final set. DU put a 6-0 run together taking an 11-6 lead. Oral Roberts season ends with an overall record of 17-15.

Turning Point
Denver and Oral Roberts tied a total of 19 times between the first two matches. In the third and final set the Pioneers went on a 6-0, taking a 11-6 lead. From that point on DU kept the lead to take the 3-0 sweep.

Inside The Box Score

  • Denver was led by Nola Basey and Kayla Principato, each with eight kills.
  • Ruth Okoye's .625 hitting percentage was the highest so far in the 2016 tournament.
  • Oral Roberts was led by Laura Milos with a match high 18 kills. Lucija Bojanjac added 25 assists and 11 digs for the Golden Eagles.
  • Denver registered six team blocks to ORU's two.
  • The first set 10 ties and four lead changes, set two had nine ties and four lead changes. The final set only saw four ties.

News & Notes

  • It is the third straight season Denver has reached the title game.
  • The Pioneers are now 23-1 against league opponents on its home floor.
  • It is the second time that South Dakota and Denver have faced in The Summit League Semifinals. Denver defeated USD, 3-2, in 2013.
  • Denver has now won four straight meetings with South Dakota, dating back to 2014.
  • The No. 1 seed is now 35-5 overall in The Summit League Championship.


The Basics
Score: No. 2. South Dakota 3, No. 3 North Dakota State 0
Records: South Dakota (25-6), IUPUI (14-18)
Location: Hamilton Gymnasium – Denver, Colo.

DENVER – No. 2 South Dakota swept the three-seeded North Dakota State Bison and earn a trip to The Summit League Tournament final for the first time in program history Saturday night (25-16, 25-18, 25-19).

Set one and two started off the same, both having multiple early ties. USD would break the final tie in each set and keep the lead, giving South Dakota a 2-0 match lead. The Coyotes posted a .243 attack percentage in the first set, and held the Bison to a .027 hitting percentage.

South Dakota started strong in set three, taking the lead from the beginning. NDSU would tie the set at eight-all. USD would answer with a 6-0 run that helped them take the third and final set.

The Coyotes advance to play Denver Sunday afternoon in The Summit League Tournament Championship. The two teams split the season series, each winning on its home floor. North Dakota State ends its season with a record of 14-18.

Turning Point
The Coyotes led set three from the start. The Bison tied the match at 8-8 and stayed with-in two for most of the set, until USD went on a 6-0 run taking the lead to 23-16.  The 6-0 helped them gain more and more momentum and a lead they would never relinquish.

Inside The Box Score

  • Four Coyotes recorded double-digit kills in the match: Audrey Reeg (14), Elizabeth Loschen (11), Rachel Schmidt (10) and Lindsey Brown (10).
  • South Dakota's Brittany Jessen recorded her 17th double-double of the season (42 assists, 11 digs).
  • USD registered a team hitting percentage of .375 in the second set and .300 for the match. The Coyotes held NDSU to a .027 in the first set.
  • Player of the Year Audrey Reeg recorded her 19th double-double of the season, tallying 11 digs and 14 kills.

 News & Notes

  • South Dakota advances to its first ever Summit League Championship.
  • It was USD's 17th sweep of the season, improving their record to 17-4 in three-sets.
  • Tonight's meeting was the 61st time these teams have met, NDSU still leads the series, 49-12.
  • The No. 2 seed now has an overall tournament record of 17-18.

Up Next
No. 2 South Dakota moves on to play defending champion and host Denver in Sunday's Summit League Championship match at 2:00 p.m. (MT). The two teams split the regular season series.


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