Beavers Hold Wolves to 39 Kills in 3-1 Victory;
Friday, October 3, 2003
BEMIDJI, MINN. -- Moving to 4-0 at home on the season, Bemidji State (10-9, 2-2) came away with a key, 3-1, NSIC victory over Northern State (6-10, 2-2) tonight at the BSU Gymnasium. BSU has now swiped five straight at home and seven of the last eight in competition. Scores were 30-26, 30-22, 20-30 and 30-19.

“ The girls were real positive and getting after it in practice before tonight,” said head coach Kim Falkenhagen. “They were doing different mental things in practice such as not allowing a visitor point to affect us - to just get over it. I think that carried over into this match.”

The match started poorly for Bemidji State with the Wolves gaining a 10-4 lead in game one. After a kill by senior Nicole McDougall, the Beavers turned on the offense and held NSU to six single points while scoring 20. The hosts led 24-16 at that point. Three service aces in a row from senior Lisa Smith capped that 20-6 run. Northern State made a push, snatching 10 of the final 16 points but BSU ended the game with a 30-26 win.

Both clubs exchanged the first 10 points before the Beavers corralled four straight to take a 9-5 lead in game two. The visitors never led in the game and could only get as close as 12-9 after the initial volley of points. Three unanswered kills by junior Kristin Smith, McDougall and senior Lisa Smith closed the game out.

With the score tied at 5-5 in the third game, Northern State reeled off six straight and 16 of 22 to take a 21-11 lead. BSU could never get a rally going, coming within seven at 14-21, but the Wolves took the game.

Forcing the guests into an early time-out, the Beavers led 8-3 after a knock-down by Lisa Smith in the final game. NSU countered with four straight to trail 8-7 but that was the closest it would get as the hosts notched five of the next six. McDougall’s 13th kill sparked a game-ending 12-6 run.

“I saw our girls take a lot more control themselves and just get the job done,” said Falkenhagen. “The did it more on their own and that was real nice to see. This was a great win to build into tomorrow and Moorhead.”

The Beavers held the Wolves to 39 kills on the night while totaling 66. Also, BSU held a 12-7 advantage in service aces - it was the seventh match to have 10 or more. With a better hitting mark (.186-.119), BSU now is unbeaten at 9-0 when accomplishing that feat.

Keeping up her streak of double-doubles, senior Kristin Peterson totaled a game-high 16 kills and 22 digs. It is her 22nd career and fifth in her last seventh match. Lisa Smith added 14 kills while McDougall had 13. On the defensive side, junior Kristine Engman recorded 19 digs - her ninth 10+ effort in 2003. With her second 50+ assist performance of the year, Kristin Smith tallied 51 assists and 16 digs for her 19th career double-double.

The Wolves got 11 kills apiece from Renae Sparling and Jessica Bates. Setter Tara Sauter posted 29 assists while Monica Inge had a team-high 15 digs.

Continuing the Homecoming weekend, the Beavers host the Dragons from MSU-Moorhead tomorrow. First serve begins at 6:00 p.m. in the BSU Gymnasium. The contest is marked as Bemidji Pride day. Those fans who are most spirited have a chance of winning fifty dollars.

Overall, Bemidji State improves to 28-17 all-time edge, including a 12-5 mark at home...The Beavers now own a 10-2 mark when having more service aces than their opponent this season...Bemidji entered the match as the top club in the NSIC with 2.32 service aces/game - Northern State sits last with 1.19 sapg...The 39 kills by Northern State is the least for an opponent since Wisconsin-Superior had 34 (10/3/00) and the .119 hitting mark is the lowest since Minnesota-Morris went for a .082 clip (38-26-146), Sept. 22, 2000...BSU sits two wins shy of 600 in school history...The Beavers are one win away from equaling the 2002 total of 11 - the 10 wins is the most since the 1999 club had 25.