OREM, Utah - Southern Utah University women's volleyball hit a season-high .274 (30-10-73), but Utah Valley hit even better, logging a .543 clip (44-6-70) en route to a three-set victory over the Thunderbirds on Monday night. The loss drops the T-Birds to 2-21 on the year while UVU moves to 15-12 with the win.
Utah Valley opened the match with a six-point run and later build a double-digit lead at 14-4. Southern Utah's largest surge came by way of a 3-0 run behind a Jenna Bradfield service ace and Alissa Youart kill. The Wolverines ultimately finished out the set with back-to-back points to take the 25-16 win.
Southern Utah hit .320 during the second set, but was outdone by the Wolverines in the frame as the home team hit .842 with 16 kills on 19 swings without an error. The performance helped Utah Valley come back from a 4-0 opening run by the Thunderbirds and finish the set, 25-14, as part of a 16-5 closing run.
SUU opened the third set with a 3-1 run, but the advantage dissipated as the Wolverines came back to tie the frame at 4-4. Back-to-back points put Utah Valley up 6-4, but a Mikayla Dunford kill pulled the margin back to one at 6-5. However, it was as close as the T-Birds came as UVU used a three-point and two-point run late in the set to seal the match 25-17.
Freshman Ann Clappier led the T-Birds with nine kills on the night, tying Taylor Heine (7-0-14) with a .500 hitting percentage with only two errors on 14 swings. Utah Valley's Kalani Norris had a career night, hitting .722 with 13 kills on 18 swings with no errors, to lead all players.
Southern Utah will return to the court on Thursday night, hosting Sacramento State in what is being billed as "Volleyballoween". Fans 12-and-under in their Halloween costumes can get in for free and will be able to trick-or-treat in the hallways of the Centrum beginning at 6:00 p.m. Live stat and live video links for the match will be available online at www.suutbirds.com.