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Momentum Swings Lead to Sweep

Oct. 4, 2007

Box Score

PORTLAND, Ore. - Road victories are not easy to come by in the tough West Coast Conference, but Loyola Marymount volleyball picked up one Thursday night, sweeping Portland 3-0 (30-27, 30-21, 30-20) to improve to 9-6 on the season and 1-1 in WCC play. The Pilots dropped to 7-9 and 0-3 after suffering the loss in its Chiles Center. Momentum swings proved key, as the Lions used a 14-1 run in game two and a 6-1 streak in game three to help secure the sweep at Portland.

The Lions were led by senior Heather Hughes, the current national leader in kills per game, who finished with 17 kills and 12 digs.

Game one was tight, as neither team could build a lead of more then three points at any time. LMU went up early at 5-3, but the Pilots responded to tie the game at 5-5 on a block. From there, Portland rallied to an 11-8 lead. But, the Lions scored the next three points and tied the game at 11-11 on a kill by Renee Horton. LMU built a three point lead at up 18-15. Back-to-back blocks by the Pilots cut the Lions lead to one again at 18-17. UP then tied the game at 20-20 on a kill. Loyola Marymount got it back at 28-25 and went on to win the game 30-27. The Pilots managed to hit .263, but hurt themselves with six service errors in the frame.

Portland took an early 4-1 lead in game two. LMU then found its stride and went on a huge 14-1, run taking a 15-5 lead behind the serving of Hughes. The LMU run was finally put to a stop on a kill by Jessica Clemens. A Portland cut the LMU lead to seven points making the score 17-10. The Pilots then made it a five point game at 20-15. An attacking error by the Lions brought the LMU lead down to three 20-17. The Lions worked to build the lead back to six points going up 27-21 before winning the game 30-21. Loyola Marymount was led by senior Jania Motton who had six kills in the frame.

The Pilots took an early 11-8 lead in game three. The Lions fought back to tie the game at 11-11. LMU then took a 15-12 lead on an ace by Horton. A kill by Hughes pushed the Lions' lead to five points at 17-12. LMU extended the lead to seven points, going up 20-13. The Pilots won the next three points to a make it a 20-16 game, forcing the Lions to take a time out. A kill made it a three point game with LMU up 20-17. Loyola Marymount got back on track to secure the sweep by going on a 6-1 run and pushed the lead back to eight points at 26-18. The Lions won game three 30-20.

In addition to Hughes' double-double outing, Motton had nine kills and four blocks while hitting .375 on the night. Fellow senior Christianna Reneau also had nine kills and added a team-high 16 digs.

The Pilots were led by junior Jennifer Sheedy who finished with 10 kills for the match.

LMU now travels to Gonzaga for a 1:00 p.m. Saturday WCC match that will conclude a month-long road swing. The match will be carried on Gametracker at LMULions.com and live video (subscription-based) at gozags.com.