Volleyball stubs toe with 3-0 loss at The Nest
SACRAMENTO -- Northern Colorado Volleyball came into its match with Sacramento State on Saturday brimming with confidence following three consecutive sweep victories against a regional rival and two Big Sky Conference opponents.
The Bears will now make their back to Greeley a wounded bunch after suffering a sobering straight sets loss at The Nest (25-17, 25-17, 25-16).
Northern Colorado, which fell to 8-5 on the season and 2-1 in the Big Sky, had won eight consecutive times against the Hornets, last falling to them in an identical 3-0 loss in Sacramento in 2007.
"They literally just outplayed us in every aspect of the game," Benson said. "So, this will be a good lesson for us, and, hopefully, give us a renewed motivation when we come back on Monday."
Northern Colorado hit just .162 across the three sets, notching its second-lowest efficiency mark of the season, surpassed only by its .157 effort in a loss at then-No. 14 Colorado State.
On the other side of the net, Sacramento State (6-9, 1-1) sizzlied with a .319 percentage, which is the highest mark any Big Sky opponent has registered against the Bears since Eastern Washington finished with a .416 mark in November 2008.
Northern Colorado also lost the digs battle (37 to 34) and the blocking war (six to five).
"Give credit to Sac. State," Benson said. "I got outcoached, we got outplayed, and that's the story of the match. We've got to be better when we get back in the gym."
In a battle of arguably the Big Sky's best two libero's, the Bears' Amanda Arterburn won out over the Hornets' Breanne Menees with a match-high 17 digs, moving her ever closer to the Northern Colorado NCAA Division I program digs record set by Breanna Van Der Most (2006-09) in 2009.
Arterburn will enter next Friday night's road match at Eastern Washington with 1,366 career digs, shy of Van Der Most's record of 1,517.