By FHSU SPORTS INFORMATION
KEARNEY, Neb. – Fort Hays State Volleyball fell to No. 6 ranked Nebraska-Kearney in straight sets on Tuesday evening (Sept. 27). The Lopers rolled to 25-14 and 25-15 wins in the first two sets, but the Tigers played the Lopers tight in the third to a score of 25-23. UNK moved to 16-1 overall and lead the MIAA at 6-1, while FHSU moved to 6-9 overall, 1-6 in the MIAA.
The Lopers were very efficient in the first two sets, hitting .375 and .333. They put down 18 kills in the opening set and 15 in the second, and held the Tigers to just five in the first and nine in the second. After two sets, UNK was hitting .354 overall, while FHSU was at .015.
Despite being down 15-10 in the third, the Tigers rallied back with a 6-1 run to tie the set at 16-16. The Tigers would also tie the game up at 19, 20, 21, and 22 before the Lopers won three of the last four points. UNK cooled a bit to a .286 hitting percentage in the set, while FHSU posted a .184 percentage in the third.
Gracie Rains led the Tiger offensive attack with 11 kills and a .250 hitting percentage. Riley Tinder added seven kills. Emily Ellis, Morgan Christiansen, and Claire Olson had four blocks each. Caiya Stucky had a team-high 20 assists, while Jaden Daffer reached double figures in digs with 11.
Emersen Cyza led the Lopers with 16 kills and hit .367. Fallon Stutheit also reached double figures in kills for UNK with 11 and was errorless, hitting .579 in the match. Peyton Neff led the Lopers in assists with 41, while Lauren Taubenheim, Jensen Rowse, and Neff all reached double figures in digs.
The Tigers will be back at home on Saturday (Oct. 1) to host No. 10 ranked Northwest Missouri State at 3 p.m.