Grace loses to Marian in semifinals

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Grace’s volleyball team was unable to topple top-seeded Marian on the road Wednesday, losing 3-0 in the Crossroads League Tournament semifinals.

The Lady Lancers (20-16) struggled to slow down Marian’s offense, which produced 55 kills on a .253 percentage.

The first set was hotly contested. Marian held an 18-13 lead midway through the set, but Grace rallied behind Caylie Teel. The senior pounded out three straight kills and then teamed up with Makaela Lochmueller for a block point to help tie the score 18-18.

The Knights claimed five of the final seven points, however, to win the set 25-23.

Grace jumped ahead 10-6 in the second set, forcing an early timeout by Marian. A pair of kills from Marta Bleed sparked Grace.

The Knights quickly rallied to even the score at 13-13, and the teams were still knotted at 17-17. But Marian racked up six unanswered points at that moment, holding on for a five-point win.

The Lady Lancers dug themselves into a massive 10-1 hole in the third game. Grace managed to produce a noble rally, going on a 10-4 charge to slice Marian’s lead to 14-11.

The rest of the set remained close, but Grace was never able to recover from that early deficit. Marian secured the sweep 25-20 in the third game.

Teel had a double-double with 14 kills and 11 digs, hitting at a .244 percentage and adding three block assists.

Kelsee Zuidema was next offensively for Grace with six kills, and Bleed added five kills.

Gina Novotny produced 20 digs, Deborah Michalski had 12 digs, and Gabbey Harrington passed out 22 assists.

Lochmueller added 4 kills, 1 solo block and 5 block assists, and Hanna Leach had four kills and a block assist.

The Lady Lancers will shift their attention to qualifying for the NCCAA National Championships.