Creighton Coach Kirsten Bernthal Booth Earns 300th Win

  0 Wendy Mayer | September 24th, 2017 | College - Women's Indoor, Division I Mid-Major, News


  • No. 13 Creighton def. Villanova 3-1 (25-20, 23-25, 25-19, 25-16)
  • Creighton moves to 9-4, 2-0 Big East; Villanova falls to 7-6, 0-2 Big East
  • Omaha, Nebraska
  • Attendance:
  • Box Score


OMAHA, Neb. – Junior outside hitter Jaali Winters put down 18 kills to lead No. 11 Creighton past Villanova on Saturday to earn head coach Kirsten Bernthal Booth her 300th win with the Bluejays.

Winters was joined in double-digits by senior middle blocker Marysa Wilkinson (13), sophomore middle Megan Ballenger (11) and junior outside Taryn Kloth (11). Wilkinson and freshman middle Naomi Hickman put up four blocks apiece, while senior setter Lydia Dimke paced the backcourt defense with 18 digs. Sophomore libero Brittany Witt and junior defensive specialist Samantha Bohnet followed with 12 digs apiece. Dimke rounded out a double-double with 43 assists, in her first match back in the lineup after missing two matches due to injury.

Junior outside Darcy Wolf posted 10 kills, while sophomore outside Remy Fairchild and junior middle Amanda Pedersen-Henry chipped in nine and eight respectively to lead Villanova. Wolf, Pedersen-Henry and redshirt freshman middle Myah Massenburg put up three blocks apiece. Sophomore libero Regan Lough pulled up a match-high 21 digs, followed by junior setter Ashley Knight (13) and Fairchild (10). Knight finished off a double-double with 33 assists.

Creighton outhit Villanova .292 to .122 and registered 23 more kills (65-42) and two more blocks (9-7). The Wildcats outserved the Bluejays 5-3 in aces.

The teams tied five times in the early stages of Set 1, last at 8-all, before Creighton pulled away with a 7-3 run. Four Wildcat miscues aided the rally. Up just two at 16-14, the Bluejays pushed the margin to seven with three Kloth kills in a 6-1 run. A Hickman kill put Creighton at set point at 24-17, but Villanova fought of three attempts, including two with help from Bluejay errors. Winters notched the final putaway at 25-20.

Villanova built an 11-5 lead in Set 2 with three aces and five Creighton errors. The Bluejays scored nine of the next 10, however, to seize a 14-12 advantage. Four Wildcat miscues and two blocks buoyed the Creighton rally. Wolf downed two kills as VU surged ahead 17-15. The lead changed hands three times over the next 11 points, with Creighton ending up on top 22-21. After ties at 22 and 23, Fairchild and Allison Fitzgerald wrapped up the Villanova win at 25-23.

After a tie at 8, Creighton surged to a 13-9 advantage in Set 3. Winters downed two kills, while Dimke added a putaway and an ace in the run. Wilkinson and Kloth notched two kills each as the Bluejays raised the margin to seven at 21-14. Fairchild and Wolf turned in two kills apiece to get Villanova within four at 22-18, but Creighton scored three of the final four to take a 2-1 lead in the match.

The Bluejays finished off the match, hitting at a .405 clip. Five players turned in kills as Creighton took a 9-5 lead in Set 4. Two kills each by Wilkinson and Winters made it a seven-point game at 17-10. The teams traded points over the next six serves, before the Bluejays notched four straight to earn their first match-point try at 24-14. Villanova thwarted the first two tries with a block and a hitting error, but Winters came through for Creighton to end the 25-16 win.


Courtesy: Creighton Athletics

Brittany Witt and Lydia Dimke had double-doubles as Kirsten Bernthal Booth won her 300th match at Creighton on Sunday in a 3-1 volleyball win over Villanova.

Scores in favor of CU were 25-20, 23-25, 25-19, 25-16.

Witt had 12 digs to go with a career-high 12 assists for her first career double-double, while Dimke returned after missing two matches to record 43 assists and 18 digs, adding seven kills on .500 hitting.

Dimke’s return helped Creighton (9-4, 2-0 BIG EAST) hit .292 in the four-set win, with four players supplying double-figure kills. Jaali Winters had a season-high 18 kills, while Marysa Wilkinson tallied 13 kills and four blocks on .423 hitting. Both Taryn Kloth and Megan Ballenger registered 11 kills on the afternoon for CU.  Creighton recorded 65 kills, three aces, 69 digs and nine blocks for the day.

Elkhorn native Ashley Knight led Villanova (7-6, 0-2 BIG EAST) with 33 assists and 13 digs, and Darcy Wolf came off the bench to supply 10 kills on .290 hitting. The Wildcats had 42 kills, five aces, 64 digs and seven blocks on .122 hitting. VU played without regular starters Emma Decker and Allie Loitz.

Kloth had five kills as Creighton hit .324 in the opening set to run away with a 25-20 victory.  CU broke free from a narrow 16-14 lead with an 8-3 burst, then converted its fourth set point opportunity on a kill from Winters.

Villanova raced to an 11-6 lead to open the second set, but the Bluejays would tie the score at 11 on an extended service run by Ballenger. The teams would trade the lead five times before ‘Nova scored the final three points of the set to win a 25-23 frame and even the match heading to intermission. Creighton lost the serve-and-pass game in the second set, being aced three times while also committing four service errors without an ace.

Creighton broke free from a 10-9 lead with an 11-5 surge to move ahead 21-14. The Jays would close out the set on a ball handling error by Knight. Both Wilkinson and Winters pounded five kills in the set, with Dimke contributing 13 assists and six digs.

The Bluejays closed the show in the fourth set, siding out at an 88 percent clip in a 25-16 clincher. Winters’ eighth kill of the set finished the match.

Creighton returns to action on Friday, Sept. 29 with a 6 pm Central contest at Seton Hall that will air on the BIG EAST Digital Network.

NOTES: Kirsten Bernthal Booth is now 300-157 in her 15th season at Creighton … Creighton has won 26 straight regular-season BIG EAST matches since an Oct. 30, 2015 loss to Villanova … Creighton is 6-0 all-time at D.J. Sokol Arena against Villanova … Creighton improved to 36-2 at home in BIG EAST play all-time, including 21 straight victories … Creighton is 28-1 in its last 29 home matches … Lydia Dimke‘s 18 digs were a season-high … Marysa Wilkinson moved past Kelly Goc for ninth on Creighton’s all-time total blocks list with 355 in her career … The five aces by Villanova matched the most by a Bluejay opponent this fall ..  Brittany Witt‘s 12 digs give her exactly 700 in her CU career.

Courtesy: Villanova Athletics

Darcy Wolf (Allentown, Pa.) finished with a team-high 10 kills in Villanova’s 3-1 (20-25, 25-23, 19-25, 16-25) loss to #15 Creighton on Sunday afternoon.


Villanova (7-6, 0-2 BIG EAST) Team Stats

42 kills

38 assists

5 serve aces

64 digs

7 blocks


#15 Creighton (9-4, 2-0 BIG EAST) Team Stats

65 kills

60 assists

3 serve aces

69 digs

9 blocks


Villanova Individual Stats

Darcy Wolf: 10 kills, 11.5 points

Remy Fairchild (Southlake, Texas): 9 kills, 10 digs

Ashley Knight (Omaha, Neb.): 33 assists, 13 digs

Regan Lough (Riverside, Calif.): 21 digs, 5 assists


#15 Creighton Individual Stats

Jaali Winters: 18 kills, 19.5 points, .350 hit pct.

Marysa Wilkinson: 13 kills, 15.5 points, .423 hit pct.

Lydia Dimke: 7 kills, 43 assists, 18 digs


Set 1:

Villanova and Creighton were tied at three, four, six, seven and eight, with multiple lead changes to start the first set. The Bluejays then took four of the next five points to jump out to a 12-9 lead. Villanova responded with two points to two Creighton errors, but the Bluejays then went on a three-zero scoring run of their own to take a 15-11 lead. The Wildcats kept things close, narrowing the Bluejays lead to 16-14 after back to back kills from Darcy Wolf and Amanda Pedersen-Henry(Murrieta, Calif.). Creighton then earned six of the next seven points scored in the set, taking a late 22-15 lead. Villanova fought back late in the set, getting all the way to 24-20 before the Bluejays closed out the set 25-20.

Set 2:

Villanova came out gunning in the second set, jumping out to a quick 4-1 lead. Creighton chipped into their lead at 6-4, but Villanova was able to rattle off three straight points on three Bluejay errors forcing a timeout with the score at 9-4 Villanova. Out of the timeout, the Wildcats continued to put the pressure on Creighton with two straight points, but Creighton was able to go on a five-zero scoring run, forcing a Wildcats timeout still leading 11-10. Out of the timeout, Creighton continued their run with another point, but the Wildcats retained the lead after a kill from Mallory Potts to bring the score to 12-11. Creighton then scored three straight to take a 14-12 lead, but a kill from Darcy Wolf and an attack error by the Bluejays tied the score back up at 14. The Wildcats took three of the next five points, getting to a 17-16 lead. The teams continued the back-and-forth pace, tying the set at 18, 19, 20, 21 and 22. Creighton scored to take a late 23-22 lead, but the Wildcats held strong and finished the match scoring three straight points on kills from Remy Fairchild and Allison Fitzgerald (St. Louis, Mo.) to win the second set 25-23.


Set 3:

Villanova kept their momentum going, starting out with a 3-1 lead in the third set. Creighton answered back fast, tying things up at 3 a piece. The two teams traded scores to a 10-9 Bluejays lead, then Creighton scored two straight points to force a Wildcats timeout with a 12-9 lead. Following the timeout, Creighton took three of the next five points to take a 15-11 lead. They extended that lead to 17-12, forcing another Villanova timeout late in the third set. The Wildcats earned a point out of the timeout, but Creighton remained in control. The Bluejays got their lead to 22-15, but Villanova fought back late in the set again with three straight points on a kill from Darcy Wolf and a pair of kills from Remy Fairchild forcing Creighton to take a timeout. The Bluejays prevailed, closing out the third set 25-19.


Set 4:

The teams got out to a 5-5 tie, then Creighton earned four straight points to take a 9-5 lead. They extended their lead to 12-7, forcing Villanova to take a timeout. Out of the timeout, the Wildcats scored first, but the Bluejays continued their momentum extending their lead to 17-11. Villanova traded points with Creighton, but the Bluejays took their biggest lead of the set at 20-13. The Wildcats earned a point on a kill from Allie Olsonoski (New Orleans, La.), but Creighton rattled off four straight points to gain a late 24-14 lead. Villanova scored two more times, but the Bluejays closed out the fourth set and the match with a 25-16 victory.


Head Coach Josh Steinbach had this to say after the match, “I think we played much better today. The message for the weekend is that we have to be better with some little things. Our team is looking forward to this week of practice and getting back at it on Friday at home against Xavier.”


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About Wendy Mayer

Wendy Mayer

Wendy Mayer has worked in athletics media relations for the last 20 years. The Northwest Missouri State alumna is currently senior writer for after spending the last 15 years with Purdue athletics.

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