The Beach wins two of three in Illinois
Published: Monday, September 17, 2012
Updated: Monday, September 17, 2012 22:09
In its last opportunity to build momentum before beginning Big West Conference play, the Long Beach State women’s volleyball team won two of three matches at the Bradley Invitational.
The ‘Niners (5-6) opened the tournament Friday night by defeating Arkansas State in four sets. They continued their success on Saturday by beating Northern Illinois before falling to Northern Iowa in the tournament finale later that day.
The 49ers defeated the Red Wolves (9-6) with a score of 25-16, 25-16, 22-25 and 25-20 and were led by junior outside hitter Delainey Aigner-Swesey, who had a team-high 16 kills and 15 digs en route to her second career double-double.
The match also featured the return of sophomore middle blocker Alma Serna, who had been out with an ankle injury since the first set of the season. She provided nine kills, one block and seven block assists in her first game back.
The Beach then played twice on Saturday, starting with a straight-set victory over Northern Illinois. Aigner-Swesey led the ‘Niners over the Huskies (9-7) with a season-high 18 kills on .429 hitting and junior setter Tara Roenicke provided 37 assists to go along with five kills and eight digs. Overall, LBSU out-hit Northern Illinois .291 to .122 and won 25-23, 25-12 and 25-19.
LBSU couldn’t sweep its tournament slate, however, as it ended its stay in Illinois with a four-set loss to Northern Iowa (9-5). Despite receiving double-doubles from Aigner-Swesey and senior outside hitter Janisa Johnson, the 49ers fell to the Panthers 25-18, 25-22, 21-25 and 25-20.
The 49ers had their most successful outing of the year at the Bradley Invitational, as they won twice in the same weekend for the first time this season. Aigner-Swesey earned some recognition of her own with a nod to the all-tournament team. Her performance of 45 kills, 38 digs and .288 hitting percentage for the weekend helped send the ‘Niners out of nonconference play on a high note.
LBSU will return to the court Friday night to host Cal Poly (1-10) in the Big West opener.