UMBC Takes Down Loyola, Falls to Robert Morris on Final Day of RMU Invitational

UMBC Takes Down Loyola, Falls to Robert Morris on Final Day of RMU Invitational

Moon Township, Pa.—UMBC volleyball defeated Loyola, 3-1, before losing to Robert Morris, 3-2 on Saturday. Freshman Makenzie Morgen (Appleton, Wisc./Appleton) recorded 35 kills on the day, with 20 coming against Loyola.

"I'm proud of the way the girls played this weekend," head coach Ian Blanchard said about his team's performance this weekend. "We had the opprotunity to look at several different lineups and many players. We were really excited about the energy level and competitiveness our team displayed throughout the weekend," he would go on to say.

UMBC vs. Loyola (Md.) (Game One)

The Retrievers opened the day with a 3-1 win against the Greyhounds. Freshman Makenzie Morgen (Appleton, Wisc./Appleton) recorded a team high 20 kills for the Retrievers, who saw three player record at least ten kills.

Neither side got out early in the opening set, but a quartet of kills by Morgen pushed the Retrievers in front 23-19 late in the set. However the Greyhounds would respond, tying the set at 25-25. UMBC would close out the set with a kill by Morgen and a service ace by Claudia Lopez (Guaynabo, Puerto Rico/Academia Maria Reina) with a 32-30 win.

Loyola would take the second set, 25-21 to tie the match at one all. In the third, the Retrievers took command mid-way through the stanza after a trio of kills by junior Zoya Trendafilova (Sofia, Bulgaria/Elisaveta Bagryana) made it 18-11. UMBC went on to win the set 25-15 to take a 2-1 lead into the fourth set.

The Retrievers closed out the match, winning the set 25-14 after a 9-3 run pushed the Dawgs ahead 19-10.

Morgen finished with 20 kills, adding nine digs in the match. Krystal Williams (Baltimore, Md./Western Tech) and Trendafilova each had 11 kills in the match.

UMBC vs. Robert Morris (Game Two)

Robert Morris came out attacking early, taking an 11-8 lead. However the Retrievers would rally back, rattling off six straight points to force a Colonial timeout at 14-11. UMBC would take control of the set from there, as the Dawgs got four of their last five points on kills.

Both teams battled back and forth in the second set early. After a couple of service errors by UMBC and a Colonial block, Robert Morris found themselves up 7-4. The Retrievers would claw their way back to retake the lead after a Sherelle Walker (New Freedom, Pa./Susquehannock) block at 10-9.

The Colonials and Retrievers would continue the back and forth affair, but a kill by Morgen forces a Robert Morris timeout at 20-19. However Robert Morris would go on a 6-3 run to close out the set, 25-23.

After being down at the beginning of set three, UMBC fought back to take a 13-10 lead after kills by Morgen forcing RMU to call for time. However the Colonials would have the last laugh, taking a wild third set, 28-26 to give them a 2-1 lead.

UMBC took control of the fourth set early, and pushed the lead all the way to 18-8 and would go on to win the set, 25-11, forcing a decisive fifth set.

In the final frame, UMBC and RMU would continue to trade points, but it was the Colonials who came out on top, 16-14 to take the match 3-2.

Morgen finished with 16 kills, giving her 36 for the day. Walker ended with 13 and Maddie Schneider (Olathe, Kan./Olathe Northwest) had 14 for the Retrievers.

Next up the Retrievers will travel to the UConn Dog Pound Challenge. UMBC will take on UConn and James Madison on Friday, September 4, and close out the challenge against Bryant on Saturday.