OVERVIEW – MERCYHURST/WEST ALABAMA
SCORES: Northwood Timberwolves 3, Mercyhurst Lakers 0 (25-22, 25-16, 25-23)/Northwood 3, West Alabama 1(25-15, 25-22, 19-25, 25-16)
RECORDS: Northwood (1-0), Mercyhurst (0-1)/Northwood (2-0), West Alabama Tigers (0-2)
LOCATION: Osbourne Hall – Canton, Ohio (Malone University)
RECAP: Northwood opened the 2017 season with a pair of victories over Mercyhurst & West Alabama to begin play at the Hall of Fame City Challenge Friday afternoon (September 1).
INSIDE THE MATCH - MERCYHURST
- Northwood trailed 11-8 in the opening set when the Timberwolves went on a run to take control. NU scored 13 of the next 17 points to go up 21-15 en route to a 25-22 win. Both teams had the same hitting line in the set: 11 kills, eight errors on 46 attempts (.065).
- After a tight start to the second set, Northwood posted an 11-4 run to go up 15-8. The Timberwolves eventually finished off a 25-17 win to go up 2-0. Northwood had its best offensive set of the match, hitting .333 (12-2-30) while holding the Laker to a .139 clip (12-7-39).
- The final set was the closest of the match – there were 14 ties and six lead changes. Mercyhurst had their biggest lead of the day at 13-8 midway through the set. After a Northwood timeout, the Timberwolves came right back, scoring five straight points to level the score at 13-13. The Lakers led 22-21 late when NU finished strong to close out the match, scoring four of the final five points to earn the win. The final set proved to be a defensive battle – NU hit just .100 (10-6-40) while MC finished at .140 (12-6-43).
- HITTING: Northwood: .147 (33-16-116), Mercyhurst: .112 (35-21-125)
- DIGS: Northwood 62 (Brenna Murphy – 14), Mercyhurst 62
- BLOCKS: Northwood 7.0 (Carson Rutherford – 5), Mercyhurst 5
- ACES: Northwood 8 (four players – 2), Mercyhurst 3
TOP NU PERFORMERS
- Carson Rutherford: Seven kills, two aces, five blocks, two aces, 12.0 points
- Meredith Collins: Nine kills, 10 digs, two blocks, 10.0 points
- Hailey Jones: 26 assists, 12 digs
INSIDE THE MATCH - WEST ALABAMA
- Northwood came out fast in the opening set to take control early, scoring nine of the first 12 points. The Timberwolves led by as many as 11 points before taking the set 25-15. NU hit .261 (12-6-23) while holding the Tigers to a -.143 clip (4-7-21).
- The Timberwolves scored seven of the first 10 points of the second set to take the early lead once again. West Alabama bounced back to tie the game at 13, but Northwood never allowed UWA to take the lead. NU earned the set 25-22 to go up 2-0. The defenses were the story of the second set – Northwood hit .132 (12-7-38) compared to West Alabama at .056 (12-10-36).
- After taking their first five sets of the season, the Timberwolves struggled in the third set. The score was tied 12-12 when the Tigers earned eight of the next 10 points to go up 20-14. NU got no closer than four points the rest of the way as UWA picked up a 25-19 win in the set. Northwood hit .000 in the third (7-7-40) while West Alabama finished at .100 (11-7-40).
- West Alabama led 6-3 and 7-4 early in the fourth set before Northwood found its game. The Timberwolves went back on top for good at 12-11 and finished strong. Northwood earned seven of the final nine points to close out the win 25-16. NU had its best offensive set of the match in the fourth, hitting .297 (14-3-37). UWA also had its best offensive numbers in the fourth, ended up at .171 (12-6-35).
- HITTING: Northwood: .159 (45-23-138), West Alabama: .068 (39-30-132)
- DIGS: Northwood 55 (Murphy – 12), West Alabama 65
- BLOCKS: Northwood 7.0 (Colleen Mayer – 3), West Alabama 3.0
- ACES: Northwood 6 (Sydney Greulich/Collins – 2), West Alabama 5
TOP NU PERFORMERS
- Greulich: Nine kills, two blocks, two aces, 12.5 points
- Rutherford: 11 kills, eight digs, two blocks, 12.0 points
- Collins: Nine kills, 11 digs, two aces
- Mayer: eight kills, three blocks, .333 attack percentage, 10.0 points
- Hailey Jones: 35 assists, nine digs
- Northwood will take on Charleston (WV) and Malone Saturday (September 2) at 11:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., respectively.