Volleyball Falls to Loyola
Chicago - Cross town bragging rights and regional rankings were at stake when DePaul faced Loyola-Chicago Wednesday night. Unfortunately for the Blue Demons, they were unable to come out on top as they lost to the Ramblers 3-0 (13-15, 15-17, 2-15).
Loyola halted the Blue Demons' bid to clinch their first back-to-back 20 win seasons since 1990-91 in a match that left head coach Dawn Dockstader disappointed with what might have been. DePaul held leads late in the first and second games but was unable to seal the games.
"That was an embarrassment," said Dockstader. "To be up for as many game points as we had and to not finish the games is embarrassing."
A trio of Blue Demons, headed by Stephanie Bishop, rallied the team during the match. Bishop produced her second best hitting night of the season connecting on 18 kills with just two errors for a .500 hitting percentage. She had 11 in game two alone and added seven digs and a solo block during the match.
"Steph was just phenomenal tonight. She really was almost unstoppable," said Dockstader.
Directing some of the attention away from Bishop was Melissa Nordine, who played admirably in both the middle--where she is accustomed to playing-and on the outside. Nordine closed the night with 14 kills, nine digs and a .370 hitting percentage.
Feeding the two hitters was setter Kara Jakusz who ended the night with 44 assists and a team high 11 digs.
"Kara and Mel both played outstanding as well," said Dockstader. "It's unfortunate that we only had three players play well, because this is a team game and three people can't carry a team."
The loss moves the team's record to 19-8 (9-3 Conference USA), while Loyola improves to 16-8 (8-1 Mid-Continent Conference).
DePaul's next matches will be on the road as it travels to Louisville on Friday and Cincinnati on Sunday. The matches can have a major impact on the conference tournament seedings if the Blue Demons play well. The matches begin at 7 p.m. and 2 p.m. respectively.