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LMU Drops a Heartbreaker, Falls to No. 19 USD

Nov. 8, 2007

Box Score

SAN DIEGO, CA - Junior Emily Day collected a match-high 26 kills and added 10 digs to record a double-double in LMU's (13-11, 5-6 in WCC) heartbreaking 3-2 loss (26-30, 29-31, 30-22, 30-21 and 13-15) to No. 19 University of San Diego (18-7, 8-3 in WCC) in a WCC match on Thursday night in San Diego, Calif. In addition, Day and freshman Becky Stehling each established career-highs in block assists with seven and eight, respectively. Senior Heather Hughes provided much of the remaining offensive output for the Lions, tallying a double-double in her own right with 24 kills and a season-high 21 digs. Fellow senior Christianna Reneau added seven kills and 22 digs in the loss.

Day and Renee Horton led the Lions with five kills in game one, with Horton collecting the majority of her kills on surprise dumps into the USD defense. Day put away one of her kills to cut the Torero lead to 10-7 early in the frame. Another Day kill made it 11-8 before USD rallied to win the next two points and force a Lion timeout at 13-8. The Toreros were first to 15 in game one, taking a 15-9 lead after the break before Horton dumped back-to-back kills into the USD defense to run the tally to 15-12. After Reneau made it 17-14, the Toreros caught a little steam to extend the lead to 20-15 on an Amy DeGroot kill. LMU refused to let game one get too far out of reach, battling back to 23-20 on another Horton kill and a block by Reneau and Horton. The third time was the charm for Day just a few points later as she was blocked twice before putting away a kill to run the score to 24-22 in favor of USD. With the Torero lead dwindling, USD regained composure to take a 26-22 lead. LMU did battle to cut the lead to 28-26, but a service error made it game point at 29-26 and a Ali Troost kill handed the Toreros the 30-26 victory in game one.

After USD held the lead throughout game one, it was LMU that took an early 7-4 lead in the second frame. Day and Stehling extended the Lion lead to 11-6 with back-to-back blocks at the net to force a Torero timeout. Following a short USD rally that made it 11-8, Day collected her second block of the frame to give LMU the four-point lead at 12-8. The Toreros battled back to within one point at 12-11 before Hughes re-enforced the LMU lead at 14-11 with one of her game-high nine kills. The Lions extended the lead to 18-14 on a block by Jania Motton and Erin Downey in the middle. USD came all the way back in the frame, collecting four-straight points, to knot the game at 18 apiece before taking a lead at 19-18 on a block to force an LMU timeout. The tie and lead change proved to be just one of nine ties and five lead changes in the ever-fluctuating second frame. LMU responded well off the break, jumping out to a 21-19 lead on three-straight points. USD proved its worth in the national rankings by continuing the seesaw battle and going on a six-point run to take the 25-21 lead to force a Lion timeout. Not to be outdone, the Lions responded with six straight points of their own to force a Torero timeout at 27-25. Hughes gave the Lions the 28-26 lead with another kill before LMU ran the frame to game point at 29-27. Down, but certainly not out, USD battled back to even at 29-29 before a service ace gave the Toreros a game-point advantage. A rally at 30-29 ensued before LMU fell in a heartbreaker 31-29 in game two.

The Lions came out roaring in game two, taking a 6-0 lead over No. 19 USD on back-to-back blocks. LMU also helped its cause by holding the high-powered USD offensive to a .038 mark in the frame. LMU extended the advantage to 8-3 on a block-solo by Day before she advanced the lead to 11-4 with one of her game-high seven kills. USD battled back to 12-7 before Day answered back to stop the run and re-institute a six-point advantage at 13-7. LMU was first to 15 as it took a 15-8 advantage, but USD rallied back to 17-13 to force a Lion timeout at that mark. The Toreros kept pursuing after the break, cutting the Lion lead to 18-16 on one of Laurel Abrahamson's 11 kills in the match. A USD attack error allowed LMU to reach the 20-point plateau first at 20-16 en route to taking a 22-16 lead to force a Torero timeout. Stehling ran the tally to 24-19 with one of her kills on the night before a Hughes kill and service ace gave LMU the 26-20 lead. A USD net violation and attack error gave LMU the game-point advantage at 29-22 before Day put away the game-winner to hand the Lions the 30-22 game-three victory.

The two teams traded points early in the frame before LMU took a 9-7 lead on a Motton kill. The Lions would extend the lead to 13-8 on another Day kill before Hughes gave LMU a 20-15 lead with one of her three kills in the frame. Back-to-back USD attack errors and a ball-handling error resulted in a 28-18 LMU advantage before Day made it game point with another of her game-high six kills. Day once again connected on the game-winner to give LMU the 30-21 victory in game three and knot the match at two games apiece.

LMU took a 5-2 lead in the race to 15 in game five on a block by Stehling and Horton. The Toreros battled back to 7-6 on a Hughes attack error before a kill and a USD attack error allowed the Lions to take a 9-6 lead. The Toreros rallied back fast to cut the deficit to 9-8 before Hughes re-instituted the two-point advantage on another one of her kills. USD evened the game at 11-11 and took a 12-11 lead on a DeGroot kill just a few points later that resulted in an LMU timeout. The Toreros made it 13-12 on one of Torey Ellick's game-high tying four kills before Day collected a huge point for the Lions to knot the game at 13 and force the final timeout of the match by the Toreros. USD made it match point at 14-13 before Horton was called for a ball-handling error to hand the Toreros the 15-13 game-five win and the 3-2 match victory.

In addition to her seven kills, Horton dished-out a match-best 56 assists. Hughes tallied a match-high two service aces, while Whitney Leonard led all players with 33 digs in the loss.

DeGroot led the Toreros offensively, putting away 16 kills while collecting a double-double with 17 digs. Jessica Nyrop (32 assists and 10 digs) and Erin Wiskar (20 digs and 11 kills) also collected double-doubles in the USD victory. Andrea Csaszi recorded a team-best 23 digs for the Toreros.

LMU will return to action this Saturday when it visits WCC foe University of San Francisco at 1 p.m.