Kaylie Jorgenson, Sydney Lema and Abby Stomp posted double-doubles, but the Northern Arizona volleyball team fell in three sets, 25-20, 25-17, 25-19, to North Dakota Thursday night on the road.
“North Dakota played really good defense to start the match, especially in the back court where they were tough to get kills against,” said Lumberjacks head coach Ken Murphy. “Unfortunately, we got a little out of sorts and we started overthinking. That affected the rest of the match, but I give North Dakota credit.”
The Lumberjacks dropped to 12-14 overall and 8-7 in conference play.
Lema tied for match-high honors with 12 kills, recording her first double-digit kill match in three weeks, while Jorgenson totaled 10 kills. The Lumberjacks, however, struggled against the block of the Fighting Hawks and had only one hitter attack at a clip higher than .200: opposite hitter Heaven Harris. North Dakota recorded 11 blocks, keeping their opponent to only .099 hitting as a team.
The Fighting Hawks took flight after figuring things out midway through the first set. A 7-1 North Dakota run doomed Northern Arizona, igniting the home team and the home crowd.
The Lumberjacks came out of the break with a renewed energy and held a slim 8-7 advantage off a clever kill by Stomp, but the Fighting Hawks rattled off four straight points to move in front for good.
Jordan Anderson led four Jacks in double-digit digs with 19. Jorgenson recorded 17, Lema finished with 13 and Stomp rounded out the quartet with 10. Meanwhile, Brittni Dorsey had a hand in three of four team blocks.
Neither team tallied an ace, with the Lumberjacks being held out of the ace column for the just the second time this season. NAU committed eight service errors to just two by North Dakota. Four of NAU’s miscues at the line came in the first set, which was just a five-point difference.
NAU makes the long trip back to Flagstaff for Saturday’s Senior Day finale versus Southern Utah at 1 p.m. Emma Grimsrud, Brooke Donnelly and Dani Westfall will be honored prior to the start of the match.