VERMILLION, S.D. – South Dakota outlasted UT-Arlington in a hard-fought five-set battle on Tuesday inside the Sanford Coyote Sports Center in the quarterfinals of the National Invitational Volleyball Championships.
The Coyotes, now 30-2, received a match-high 23 kills from freshman Elizabeth Juhnke and defeated the Mavericks 25-21, 22-25, 25-15, 23-25, 15-11.
South Dakota, becoming just the third Summit League team ever to reach 30 wins, advance to the NIVC semifinals against either Tulsa or Weber State on a date to be determined later.
“I don’t think it was our greatest match,” coach Leanne Williamson said. “I think both sides had quite a few errors at times. Obviously, we were very good in the third set which was good to see offensively.
“I think it came down to us not backing off, not becoming fearful when we were taking swings. Our team continued to push to be the more aggressive team and especially in the fifth set that paid off for us.”
Juhnke had a .340 hitting percentage in a match where she moved up fourth on the single season kills chart with 481.
Sami Slaughter tallied 13 kills and Elizabeth Loschen 12 for South Dakota, who had a .236 team hitting percentage in the match.
Madison Jurgens contributed 55 assists and nine digs, moving into fourth in single season assists with 1,365 during the contest.
Anne Rasmussen had 17 digs and Lolo Weideman 11 for South Dakota, moving to 13-0 at home this season and winners of 17 straight home matches overall.
The Coyotes had an uncharacteristic 27 attack errors in the match while UT-Arlington had 31 and hit just .147 for the match.
“I do think that there were more errors then even what we’re used to seeing,” said Williamson. “Two good teams that’s gonna happen. I think the defensive effort was pretty good on both sides.”