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October 31, 2004

Eagles fall in five to defending national champs
Gross reaches 1,000th career dig

#20 North Alabama 3, USI 2

FLORENCE, Ala.—The University of Southern Indiana volleyball team lost a hard-fought match Sunday, falling to No. 20-ranked and defending national champion University of North Alabama 14-30, 30-28, 30-17, 28-30, 7-15 Sunday at Flower’s Hall.

USI (19-6) rebounded from a lop-sided loss in the first set to capture wins in the second and third games. The Screaming Eagles hit .286 in game two and a blistering .519 in game three to take a 2-1 advantage in the match.

However, service and attacking errors were a problem for USI in games four and five as the Eagles committed six service errors in game four and seven attacking errors in each of game four and five.

For the match, the Eagles finished with 17 service errors.

On a positive note, senior middle blocker Leeanne Gross (Decatur, Indiana) recorded her 1,000th career dig. She finished the match with 14 kills, a .303 attacking percentage, three service aces, eight digs, and five blocks.

Junior middle blocker Laura Ellerbusch (Newburgh, Indiana) hit .370 and matched Gross and sophomore outside hitter Chelse Doubler (Griffin, Indiana) for the team-lead in kills. Ellerbusch also had five blocks in the loss.

Freshman setter Stephanie Wilson (Terre Haute, Indiana) had 51 assists, while sophomore libero Amanda Probst (Wheeler, Illinois) finished with a match-high 25 digs. Sophomore outside hitter Emily Ryan (Batesville, Indiana) rounded out USI’s double-digit attackers with 10 kills.

UNA (20-6) was paced by Vanessa Ferretti’s match-high 19 kills as it snapped the Eagles’ six-match winning streak.

The Eagles will have a shot at clinching the GLVC regular season title Friday when they visit the University of Missouri-St. Louis. They close out the regular season with a trip to Quincy, Illinois, and the Pepsi Arena to take on Quincy University on Saturday.

A win in either of their final two matches or a Southern Illinois University Edwardsville loss will ensure that the GLVC Tournament will be played at the Physical Activities Center November 11-13.

Dan McDonnell,
USI Sports Information

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