Marquette Wire

Volleyball survives Butler in five-set victory

Photo by Austin Anderson

Photo by Austin Anderson

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It wasn’t easy, but the Marquette women’s volleyball team was able to squeak out a 3-2 (25-17, 25-19, 25-20, 25-22, 15-11) win over Butler Wednesday night at the Al McGuire Center.

“Four matches in seven days isn’t easy, so we are thankful we got all four of them and we will move on to Saturday,” Marquette head coach Ryan Theis said. “We didn’t get to spend much time on us. We’d like to think we can get to a point where we didn’t have to at practice. You know, we could perform consistently and just come out and do our thing and just prepare for opponents, but we are not professionals. We are still 18-to-22-year-olds.”

The Golden Eagles controlled the match for the first two sets and seemed well on their way to a sweep, but Butler refused to go down quietly and took the next two sets. Marquette finally secured the victory in the fifth set.

“I thought we didn’t attack nearly as well,” Theis said about the difference between the first two sets and the third and fourth sets. “First of all, we didn’t get any defensive stops, they were six for six and it wasn’t because they were hitting the ball hard and screeching it past us. It’s because we weren’t making plays on defense and I give them credit for that. If you threw that out, we got in a good position in the third set to have a comeback. But then we weren’t attacking well, so when all the kills dried up and you aren’t making good defensive stops, you lose.”

Wednesday’s match featured two of the best offensive players in the BIG EAST in Taylor Louis and Butler’s Anna Logan. Both Louis and Logan led their respective teams with 20 kills.

“These guys don’t get blocked much. I think they get blocked 1.7 a game or something, which is extremely low and you saw why,” Theis said. “I think we are a pretty good blocking team. … We’re close to our goal of two-seven a game, would be great, but they’re just not going to let you block it. So, when a team takes away that you got to dig to kill and you got to score in transition. I thought we did that in the first two (sets) and then in the fifth.”

Marquette got off to a slow start in the first set by dropping the first three points, but they quickly got on track and tied the score up at 4-4. Butler and Marquette then went point-for-point, but Madeline Mosher helped push Marquette to a 12-8 lead with three serves for Marquette points, which included one of her three aces in the set. With the score 22-16 in favor of Marquette, Mosher served back-to-back aces to give Marquette a 24-16 led. They would end up taking the set on an Allie Barber kill.

With the score tied at 14-14 in the second set, Marquette went on an 11-5 run to win the set 25-19. Four of the points came while Mosher was serving.

“I thought through the first two games (Mosher) was probably, I don’t about most valuable, but certainly her point runs led us to wins in both of those,” Theis said.

Following halftime, Butler opened the third set on a 9-4 run, forcing Marquette to call a timeout. The Bulldogs kept pressure on and went on to take the set 25-20.

“I think they just really came out to play, you know,” libero Lauren Houg said. “I feel like they had nothing to lose and they just came out. That is how you should play every game, too; we should play like we have nothing to lose, too. So we give them respect for that. They came out with guns blazing in the third, blocked like crazy and found the ground coming on our defense.”

Marquette seemed to get back on track in the third, as they were practically going point-for-point with Butler. The Golden Eagles were up 21-19, but Butler then proceeded to go on a 6-1 run to take the set 25-22.

After the Golden Eagles took an 8-3 lead in the fifth set, Butler came back to make the score 10-9, still in favor of Marquette. However, Louis led her team through the set by providing six kills and securing the win 15-11.

Marquette goes on the road Saturday night to take on DePaul.

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