CHICAGO, Ill. – In a contest between the last two undefeated teams in CCAC play, IU South Bend came up short on Thursday night, falling on the road at Saint Xavier in straight sets.
Hannah Marchand led the Titans (17-5, 13-1 CCAC) with ten kills on the night, as the team struggled to a .097 attack percentage, the lowest of the year. McKenzie Powell collected 25 assist and 10 digs for her 13th double-double of the season. Amber Jacobs led the defense with 11 digs.
Tied 8-8 in the opening set, the Cougars (19-2, 13-0 CCAC) took the lead with five of the next six points to go up 13-9. A kill and a block from Julie Brown on back-to-back points brought IUSB to within a point at 14-13, but Saint Xavier pulled away, scoring a 9-2 run to stretch the lead to 23-15. The Cougars closed out the opener four plays later, 25-17.
The home side would nearly lead wire-to-wire in game two, scoring four straight to take an early 5-2 advantage. Saint Xavier would continue to lead following a kill from Brown at 17-10, and quickly put the set away with seven of the next eight points to go up 24-11, finishing off the set two points later.
The Titans found themselves behind again early in game three, but rallied back in what was the most competitive set of the match. Kills from Brown and Abby Seeger capped a four-point run to pull within two, at 9-7. Another five-point rally later in the set made it a one-point game, 15-14 following a kill from Marchand. The Titans tied the set at 20-20 with a Seeger kill and a Cougar attacking error, and again at 23-23 with two straight kills from Marchand, but Saint Xavier would score the final two points to take the set and the match, 25-23.
IU South Bend will look to bounce back on Tuesday, when they host Governors State. First serve from the Student Activities Center is set for 7:00 p.m. on October 26.