ST. PETER, Minn. – The Simpson volleyball team ran into a buzz saw in Gustavus Adolphus and then suffered a back-and-forth loss to Hamline in match number two on Saturday at Gus Young Court at the Gustavus Adolphus Quadrangular.
Loss – Gustavus Adolphus 3, Simpson 0 (25-16, 25-14, 25-16)
Gustavus Adolphus (20-2) won their 20th straight match after hitting a robust .413 for the match. Two players had an over .500 killing percentage, led by Lauren Hanson who had 14 kills.
Simpson (11-16) was stifled offensively, being held to 31 kills with Tabitha Blaser, Sami Boekhoff and Mackenzie McGraw posting a team-high five kills each.
Sara Hoppenworth had 12 assists and Maura Chadwick 11.
Loss – Hamline 3, Simpson 1 (29-27, 25-27, 26-24, 25-19)
While Simpson lost 3-1, the final score didn’t say it all.
Both teams finished sets one and two with the slimmest of victories before the Hamline Pipers won the all-important third set 26-24 to create a critical 2-1 edge.
Hamline (10-12) and Simpson came to play defensively, having to defend 204 attacks from Simpson and 191 from the Pipers.
The Storm dug out 91 attacks and Hamline 101 to help cover for a .126 kill percentage for the Pipers.
Blaser had 13 kills and McGraw 11 to lead the Simpson attack, set up by 31 assists from Sara Hoppenworth. Olivia Sulentic had a match-high 31 digs.
Simpson is now on a season-long five-game losing streak and will look to snap that skid on Tuesday when it heads to Dubuque to take on IIAC rival Loras (16-11) at 7:30 p.m.