Volleyball ends weekend with loss to St. John’s

In their final home regular season match, Marquette volleyball fell 3-2 (30-32, 25-23, 25-19, 25-16, 15-10) to St. John’s.

Marquette struggled to find a defensive answer for St. John’s outside hitter Gaia Traballi, who finished the match with 32 kills.

“They are a tough matchup for us because they are our size,” head coach Ryan Theis said. “One of the things we are good at is blocking, (Traballi) is really good at hitting off the block, and so she won tonight.”

The Golden Eagles were unable to find a way to get their offense going for the entire match, hitting just .184.

“I thought it was a series of unfortunate events throughout the entire match,” Theis said of the offense. “In the first game I thought we had them on the ropes for passing and then down in the middle of that game we miss four of six serves that is game one. Game four I thought it was first touches, I thought we missed a lot of digs and I didn’t think we passed well. In game five it was a combination of whether it was tentative, whether it was not aggressive swings, a series of things again. I have a really hard time pointing a finger in this match.”

The first set lasted approximately forty minutes and featured eight different set points. Marquette jumped out to a 12-6 lead and seemed to have the frame under control, but St. John’s fought back and eventually tied the score at 14. Both teams would exchange points until St. John’s held match point at 24-21, but the Golden Eagles took advantage of several attack errors to tie the score at 24. The two teams would once again exchange points before St. John’s used a Marquette service error and a Traballi kill to take the set 32-30.

Both teams stayed neck and neck in the second set. Neither team was effective offensively, as St. John’s hit only .057, while Marquette mustered up a .032 hitting percentage. Down 22-20, Marquette went on a 5-1 run to close out the frame. During that run, three of the Golden Eagles points came off of St. John’s attack errors.

Marquette once again used a late push to take the third set. With St. John’s up 17-16, the Golden Eagles went on a 9-2 run to win the set 25-19. Meghan Niemann contributed three kills during the run. She would finish the day with 10 kills.

St. John’s jumped out to a quick 4-2 lead in the fourth set and never relented. With 10 kills in the set from Traballi, the Red Storm easily took the frame 25-16.

In the fifth and final set, St. John’s had a controlling 6-3 lead early, but the Golden Eagles came back to tie the score at 10. However, that would be the last points Marquette would score in the match, as St. John’s used five unanswered points to win the set 15-10. The Golden Eagles finished the fifth set with a .000 hitting percentage.

Marquette hits the road for their final two regular season matches against Butler next Friday and Xavier next Saturday.