IOWA CITY, Iowa - The South Dakota State volleyball squad hung with Big Ten foe and Hawkeye Challenge host Iowa on Saturday, but the host Hawkeyes came out on top in a 3-1 match by the set scores of 27-25, 20-25, 26-24 and 25-22.
"I think defensively we played above average tonight, but I think we made too many attack errors and got a little carless towards the ends of sets three and four," head coach Phil McDaniel said. "We have to pay better attention to detail, starting tomorrow."
The loss evens the Jackrabbits record at 1-1, while Iowa improves to 2-0 with the win.
Kelly Fiegen led the Jackrabbits, and tied for match-high honors with 16 kills, and added a match-high five block assists. Shay Birath led the defense with a match-high 19 digs. Margit Hansing finished with nine kills, and reached double-digit digs for the first time in her career with 10. Kelly Herrmann added eight kills, 13 digs and a trio of block assists.
For the Hawkeyes, Alex Lovell and Rachael Bednell both posted double-doubles in the win; Lovell with 16 kills and 10 digs, Bedell with 16 kills and 12 digs. Bethany Yeager led Iowa with 15 digs.
The Jacks fell into an early 3-0 hole in the first set, but battled back to tie the match at 5-5, the first of 13 ties in the first set. SDSU took its first lead of the set at 17-16, but never led by more than two points, the first being 18-16, which drew a time out from the Iowa bench.
After trading points after the stop in play, Iowa scored three in a row to retake the lead at 20-19, prompting a time out from SDSU.
SDSU tied the set at 20 after the time out, and eventually went up 23-22 for its last lead of the game. Iowa failed at set point at 24-23 and at 25-24, before finally capitalizing on the opportunity to win the set with a 27-25 score.
Another hole awaited the Jacks at the start of the second set, this time a 6-2 hole, but SDSU responded with a 7-0 run that turned into a 13-2 run that ended with the Jacks up 15-8. Iowa would get back to within two at 22-20, forcing an SDSU time out, but the Jacks came back with three straight points to seal the second set win at 25-20.
Iowa scored the first two points of the third set, but the Jacks bounced right back to take a 9-6 lead, one of four lead changes in the set. The Hawkeyes would come back to force one of eight ties and then take a 17-14 lead, all part of a 5-0 run.
SDSU would never lead again in the third set, but did fight back to tie the match at 24-all before Iowa made good on its second chance at set point to win the third set 26-24.
Just like the third set, the Jacks jumped out to a 9-6 lead in the fourth set, and just like the third set, the Jacks could not hold on to that lead, as the Hawkeyes came out on top in a set that saw 10 ties and six lead changes.
The final lead change came after the final tie, when Iowa came back from 22-21 to tie the set at 22-all, part of a 5-0 run to end the set at 25-22 and the match at 3-1.
The Jackrabbits return to action with a pair of matches on Saturday, first against Chicago State at 10 a.m., followed by the tournament finale against Valparaiso at 2 p.m. The Cougars dropped both of their matches on Friday to Iowa and Valpo, while the Crusaders split, with a loss to Southeast Missouri State and a win over Chicago State.