Sunday, August 28, 2016

Gold Nuggets swept; 5 matches next week in NOLA

MIAMI GARDENS, Florida  — Xavier University of Louisiana volleyball lost 25-20, 25-23, 25-20 to NAIA No. 2 Missouri Baptist and 17-25, 25-8, 25-17, 25-19 to Indiana Tech Saturday to finish 0-4 in the STU Invitational.
The Gold Nuggets (1-7) got two-match totals of 16 kills and 36 digs from Juliana Tomasoni, 15 kills fromMonet Fontaine, 13 kills from Terri Drake, 34 digs fromAmanda Perry and 24 digs from Kayla Jones.

After eight consecutive out-of-state matches to open the season, XULA will play five times next week in New Orleans. The Gold Nuggets will play Tuesday at 5 p.m. against St. Thomas (Texas) and 7 p.m. against city rival Loyola at the Wolf Pack's home court. Then XULA will play host to four opponents in theBig Easy Blastoff at the Convocation Center, meeting Pikeville at 11 a.m. and William Carey at 5 p.m. Friday and Southwest (N.M.) at 11 a.m. Saturday.

Mallory Dillon, first-team All-America a year ago, had 19 kills and hit .341, and Natalie Gremaud had 27 digs for Missouri Baptist (6-2). Sarah Pitts-Groce and Drake had seven kills apiece for XULA. The Gold Nuggets' highlight was nine consecutive points during a 14-4 run to open the second set. Drake and Hasani Salaam had two kills apiece during the surge.

Cassie Sarabia had 18 kills, 20 digs and four blocks to lead Indiana Tech (2-2). For XULA, Tomasoni had 12 kills and 24 digs — her fourth double-double of the season — Fontaine had nine kills, Jones had a season-high 17 digs, Kaelan Temple had 10 digs and two aces, and Perry — reaching double figures for the seventh consecutive match — had 21 digs.

Tiffany Phillips, who entered the day with six consecutive assist/dig double-doubles to start her collegiate career, did not extend her streak. The XULA freshman setter had 24 assists and seven digs against Missouri Baptist and 24 assists and five digs against Indiana Tech.

XULA's 84 digs against Indiana Tech were its second-most in a match this season. The Gold Nuggets began the day ranked 24th in the NAIA with 17.59 digs per set.

XULA's 21 points per set against Missouri Baptist matched its most ever against a ranked opponent.

Ed Cassiere, Sports Information Director

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