Freshman Erin Lehman (5) has been a strong offensive performer for Marquette this season. (via Dan Johnson/MarquetteImages.com)
It was an early start to the weekend, and it didn't get started off well, but Marquette prevailed in their opening match of the Xavier Invitational, defeating Mississippi 3-0 (25-21, 25-21, 27-25).
The first set started off with MU in a 5-0 hole, reminiscent of their bad starts to sets against Northwestern last Sunday. But a 7-2 run featuring two kills each from Danielle Carlson and Erin Lehman and a block from Carlson evened things out at 7. Things went back and forth from there until Marquette pulled in front 20-16 and held that lead to win the set.
The Golden Eagles got a 1-0 lead to start the second, but quickly fell behind 5-2, 7-3 and 10-5. Three kills from Holly Mertens powered an 8-3 run to tie the set up at 13. Back to back attack errors by Ole Miss gave MU a late lead at 22-20 and fittingly, the set was closed out for Marquette by an attack error by the Rebels' Amanda Philpot.
The third set still didn't start out smoothly for MU, as they fell into a 9-4 hole in the early going, including service aces from three different Rebels. But it was service errors by Ole Miss that helped Marquette climb back into the set before an Elizabeth Koberstein block put MU in front 13-12. No one would get more than a two point lead for the rest of the match, but Marquette had to face down set point twice at 24-22 and 24-23 before two attack errors by Allegra Wells allowed MU to gain an advantage and an attack error by Kiley Sherman handed MU the sweep. Marquette was able to survive an atrocious hitting percentage of .111 in the deciding set by forcing Ole Miss to hit at a clip of .103.
Lehman led MU in kills with 10, while Kelsey Mattai and Koberstein were both very effective, with hitting percentages of .875 and .600 respectively. Koberstein tossed in 33 assists, while Julie Jeziorowskii led the defense with 21 digs.
Marquette's back in action at 4pm today against Tennessee Tech.