Creighton Sweeps Northern Iowa for Bluejay Invitational Title

  0 Wendy Mayer | September 03rd, 2017 | College - Women's Indoor, Division I Mid-Major, News


  • #6 Creighton def. Northern Iowa 3-0 (25-18, 25-23, 25-21)
  • Creighton moves to 5-1; Northern Iowa falls to 4-2
  • Omaha, Nebraska
  • Attendance: 1,725
  • Box Score

Nine aces and a trio of double-digit kill efforts lifted No. 6 Creighton (AVCA 7) to a sweep of Northern Iowa and the Bluejay Invitational title via tiebreaker.

Creighton bested the Panthers in kills (39-37), hitting percentage (.165 to .109), aces (9-1) and blocks (8-7). UNI outdid the Bluejays 61-57 in digs.

Senior setter Lydia Dimke was named tournament MVP after posting a 29-assist, 10-dig double double and adding a team-leading four blocks and four aces. Dimke dished the ball to senior middle blocker Marysa Wilkinson (11), junior outside hitter Jaali Winters (10) and junior outside Taryn Kloth (10), who paced the team with 10 or more kills apiece. Freshman middle Naomi Hickman joined Dimke with four stuffs. Junior libero Samantha Bohnet managed a team-best 14 digs, followed by sophomore defensive specialist Brittany Witt (11) and Dimke (10).

Sophomore ouside Karlie Taylor and junior middle Piper Thomas paced UNI with nine kills apiece, followed by junior outside Bri Weber (8) and freshman outside Jaydlin Seehase (7). Weber and junior right side Moriah Johnson turned in three blocks apiece. Junior libero Kendyl Sorge pulled up a match-high 21 digs, followed by redshirt freshman defensive specialist Taylor Hedges (13).

Creighton charged ahead 10-5 in Set 1 with help from four UNI miscues and two Winters’ putaways. The Panthers rallied to knot the score at 10 on a Weber ace. The Bluejays pushed the margin back to three at 18-15 on a stuff by Wilkinson and Dimke. A Taylor kill made it a one-point game at 18-17, but that was close at UNI would get as Creighton ended the set on a 7-1 run, including a trio of Wilkinson kills.

UNI took the early lead in Set 2, going up 10-6 with help from a trio of blocks and two Taylor kills. Creighton responded with a 13-3 run including three blocks and three aces, to turn the deficit into a dominating 19-13 advantage. The Panthers recovered with a 7-1 run of their own to slice the margin to one at 21-20. The teams traded points over the next six serves, leading to a 24-23 score. A kill by Seehase thwarted Creighton’s first set point try, but a UNI hitting error sealed the 25-23 win.

The teams split the first 10 points of Set 3 before Creighton surged ahead with a 4-0 run, including a pair of Winters kills. Up just one at 10-9, the Bluejays again rallied, this time with a 10-3 run. Two aces and a kill by Winters and a block and an ace by Dimke lifted the advantage to 20-12. Despite trailing 22-13, the Panthers did not give way, instead scoring seven of the next eight to pull within three at 23-20. Thomas downed three kills and UNI got three points off Bluejay miscues in the run. A Wilkinson kill gave Creighton a match-point try at 24-20. A Taylor putaway kept the match going, but Wilkinson downed her 11th kill to end the night.



Courtesy: Creighton Athletics

The No. 7 Creighton Volleyball team swept UNI on Saturday night during the final match of the Bluejay Invitational, presented by First National Bank. With the victory, the Bluejays claimed the 2017 invitational championship after finishing 2-1 and winning a tiebreaker over No. 13 Kentucky thanks to a head-to-head win on Friday night.

Creighton also won the 2014 Bluejay Invitational, its only other title during 13 years of the event. Creighton is now 5-1, while the Panthers are 4-2.

Scores of Saturday night’s match in favor of the Bluejays were 25-18, 25-23, 25-21. It was just the third time in 50 all-time meetings with UNI that Creighton swept their former MVC rival.

Marysa Wilkinson led the Bluejays with 11 kills, while Jaali Winters and Taryn Kloth each finished with 10 kills.

Lydia Dimke, the invitational’s Most Outstanding Player, dished out 29 assists and had four service aces. Dimke finished the weekend with 87 assists (9.67/set), 22 digs (2.44/set), 14 kills, nine blocks and seven service aces.  Wilkinson and Winters also represented the Bluejays on the All-Tournament team.

Karlie Taylor and Piper Thomas each had nine kills to pace UNI.  Taylor represented the Panthers on the All-Tournament team along with USC’s Khalia Lanier and Kentucky’s Madison Lilley and Leah Edmond.

Creighton ended the first set on a 7-1 run to open the night with a 25-18 victory in the opening frame.

The second set was the closest of the night, with the Bluejays hanging on for a 25-23 victory after seeing its 19-13 lead dwindle. CU trailed 10-7 before a 10-3 run on the serves of Dimke and Brittany Witt provided a cushion. Samantha Bohnet had eight of her team-high 14 digs in the second set, while Taryn Kloth smashed four kills.

Creighton pulled away midway through the final set, going ahead 13-9 on consecutive aces by Winters. CU led 22-13 before a 5-0 Panther run temporarily muted the celebration. The Bluejays regrouped after a timeout and won the contest on a kill by Wilkinson.

The Bluejays finished with 39 kills, 57 digs and eight blocks on .165 hitting. CU also served up nine aces against just two service errors, including four service winners by Dimke.

UNI recorded 37 kills, one ace, 61 digs and seven blocks while hitting .109.

Creighton returns to action next weekend at the Kansas Invitational. The Bluejays will open play on Friday morning against No. 21 Purdue.

NOTES: Creighton has won 25 straight home matches against unranked teams … The crowd of 1,725 gave CU a three-match total of 6,387 total fans for the weekend … Northern Iowa won the tiebreaker over three-time defending champ USC for third place thanks to the Panthers 3-1 win over USC on Friday evening … Creighton has started 5-1 for the first time since 2013 … Creighton last won consecutive regular-season tournaments in the same season when it opened the 2004 campaign with the Comcast Lobo Invitational and Quality Inn Tiger Invitational titles … Creighton last won two regular-season tournaments in the same season in 2012, when it won the USF Invitational as well as the Northern Colorado Classic.

All-Tournament Team
Lydia Dimke, Creighton (MVP)
Jaali Winters, Creighton
Marysa Wilkinson, Creighton
Leah Edmond, Kentucky
Madison Lilley, Kentucky
Karlie Taylor, UNI
Khalia Lanier, USC

Courtesy: Northern Iowa Athletics

The No. 7-ranked Creighton Bluejays scored a 3-0 sweep of the University of Northern Iowa volleyball squad on Saturday night in the finale of the Bluejay Invitational.

Creighton (5-1 overall) won by set scores of 25-18, 25-23, 25-21.

UNI (4-2 overall) was led in kills by Karlie Taylor and Piper Thomas with nine kills apiece. Heather Hook added 28 assists and Kendyl Sorge notched a team-high 21 digs for the Panthers.

The Panthers hit .044 in the opening set and steadily improved in each set with a .167 hitting percentage in the third set. However, the Panthers could not sideout over 50 percent in either the first or third sets. UNI had a 43-percent sideout effort in the first and third sets. UNI had a 47-percent sideout performance in the match. Creighton had a 57-percent sideout effort for the match, including a 61-percent tally in the opening set.

UNI will make its 2017 home debut on Tuesday at 7 p.m. against Northern Illinois in the McLeod Center.

NOTES: UNI’s Karlie Taylor was named to the Bluejay Invitational All-Tournament team … Taylor posted 57 kills in the three matches during the tournament.

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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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