Volleyball readies for season

A glimpse into the non-conference schedule

 Prior to the start of their regular season, the Xavier women’s volleyball team hosted Northern Kentucky at Cintas Center for an exhibition match.

Despite winning the first set 25-22, Xavier dropped the ensuing three sets and lost the match 3-1.

The Musketeers dropped the second set 25-17. In the third set, the Musketeers held a 23-19 lead, but a 5-0 run by the Norse put them ahead 24-23 after a Xavier attack attempt was blocked.

Xavier quickly rebounded and took a 25-24 advantage, but Northern Kentucky took the last three points of the set to win it 27-25.

Like the third set, the fourth and eventual final set was close throughout, but with Northern Kentucky holding a 24-23 lead, an assisted block by Northern Kentucky’s Bailey Western and Lauren Crawford ended Xavier’s comeback bid and gave the Norse a 25-23 win for the set and the 3-1 match win.

The Norse defense was one of the keys to the match, as they tallied 77 digs. NKU also hit .181 as a team for the match, while they limited Xavier to a .127 clip.

While the match was only an exhibition, it broke a six-match losing streak for Northern Kentucky against Xavier.

For the Musketeers, the match was a tune-up before they get non-conference play started on Friday at a tournament hosted by Utah State in Logan, Utah.

There, Xavier will face off against Southern Utah, Utah State and Eastern Michigan.

Xavier has some familiarity with Eastern Michigan, as the Eagles won the 2007 Aussie Xavier Invitational, which was held at Cintas Center. This weekend will be the seventh meeting between the two programs, while it will be the first matchup in Xavier volleyball history against both Southern Utah and Utah State.

Following the Utah State Tournament, Xavier will return to Cintas to host a tournament of its own.

Following that, Xavier will travel to Lipscomb University for a tournament there before hosting another tournament at Cintas on Sept. 19 and 20 to close out their non-conference slate.