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Rebels Edge Lions in Title Tilt

Sept. 1, 2007

Box Score

LOS ANGELES - Both undefeated in LMU Four Points Sheraton LAX Classic action heading into Saturday night's title match, UNLV held on for a 3-1 (32-30, 34-32, 16-30, 30-28) championship win over Loyola Marymount (3-3). The Lions topped the Rebels in nearly every statistical category, but UNLV (5-1) was the team that took home the tournament title in front of more than 900 fans in Gersten Pavilion.

LMU's Heather Hughes and Renee Horton were named to the All-Tournament Team following the title tilt. Hughes' numbers on the weekend really turned heads as she averaged 7.80 kills and 4.60 digs per game while hitting .462 over the course of the tournament. She tallied a career-high 31 kills en route to a statistical triple-double with 10 assists and 15 digs in the four-game match Saturday night.

Horton also had an impressive weekend with 148 assists, 20 kills, 20 digs, and a team-high four aces. She was just two digs shy of her own triple-double against UNLV.

Looking at just the statistics, it was hard to believe UNLV topped the Lions. LMU led in almost every statistical category, including team hitting percentage (.327-.190), blocks (9-5), kills (81-66), and digs (88-85).

The difference came down to winning the final back-to-back points at the end of games one and two. Both frames went extra points, and UNLV earned both games by winning back-to-back points to head to the intermission with a 2-0 lead.

The Lions also struggled with their serve, recording 13 service errors on the night.

But LMU came out of the break with a special spark, and hit .390 as a team in game three to cruise to a 30-16 victory.

The fourth game featured a tie score eight times before the Rebels won match point at 30-28.

UNLV setter Melody Nua was named Classic MVP after posting 48 assists and 15 digs in the title match. She was joined on the All-Tournament Team by teammates Lauren Miramontes and Jessica Walters.

UC Santa Barbara's Lauren McLaughlin and Northwestern's Courtnie Paulus rounded out the All-Tournament selections.

In addition to Hughes' and Horton's impressive numbers tonight, Emily Day (20 kills, 17 digs) and Christianna Reneau (12 kills, 27 digs) were also bright spots on the box score.

Freshman libero Whitney Leonard added 15 digs for the Lions' cause.

LMU will play its fourth match in five days Tuesday when the Lions head across town to face UC Irvine at 7:00 p.m. The match will be carried on both Gametracker and the Lions' Audio Network at LMULions.com.