Double-doubles from senior Lindsay Niemeier and sophomore Allie Schumacher were not enough as the Eastern Washington women's volleyball team lost a hard-fought five-set match to San Jose State Wednesday, Sept. 11, in San Jose, Calif.
The Eagles fall to 3-5 on the year while San Jose State improves to 2-5 with the win. Set scores for the match were: 21-25, 26-24, 21-25, 25-16, 15-17.
Schumacher led Eastern with 14 kills, adding 10 digs for her second double-double of the year. Freshman Kylie Curtis notched 10 kills while juniors Talia Fermantez and Melissa Waelter each added eight kills.
Niemeier tallied her second double-double in as many games, tallying 35 assists and 14 digs. Sophomore Ryann Ensrud tied Niemeier with 14 digs while Waelter added 11 digs.
Sophomore Allison Doerpinghaus recorded five blocks while Schumacher, Fermantez and Waelter registered four blocks apiece.
The first set was close throughout as neither team was able to gain much separation. The Spartans led by three points in the early going, but the Eagles came back to tie things at 10-10 on a ball handling error from Hanah Blume. SJSU answered with a four-point run to take a 14-10 lead, but a kill from Schumacher brought Eastern back to within two, 15-13, midway through the set. EWU would come all the way back to lead 19-18, late in the frame, but the hosts rallied, scoring eight of the next 10 points to win the set.
Eastern took control of the second set early, racing out to a 6-1 lead punctuated by a kill from Curtis. The Spartans would battle back to tie the match at 8-8 but were unable to take the lead as the Eagles remained in front for the next 15 points. SJSU took its first lead of the set on a kill from Sarah Griest before extending its lead to three, 18-15, on a kill from Lauren Jacobsen. This time, it was EWU's turn to rally as the Eagles came back to take a 23-21 on a kill from Doerpinghaus. The hosts responded by scoring three straight points, but were denied a set victory when Blume committed an attack error. After another attack error from the Spartans, Curtis put away her sixth kill of the set to claim the win for Eastern.
Much like the first set, the third set saw neither team able to gain much separation. Tied 10-10, the Eagles won three straight points, forcing the hosts to take their first timeout of the set. The Spartans came out of the timeout to score nine of the next 11 points to take a 19-15 lead. EWU would pull back to within three on a kill from Doerpinghaus but would get no closer as SJSU took the third set.
The Eagles dominated the fourth set, leading from start to finish. The Spartans hung with EWU early, but a kill from sophomore Kellen Barfield put Eastern up five, 11-6, forcing SJSU to call timeout. The hosts rallied to tie the match at 13-13, but the Eagles would score eight of the next 11 points to regain a five-point advantage, 21-16, as the Spartans called their second timeout. EWU scored the final four points of the set, using kills from Doerpinghaus and Niemeier to even the match at 2-2.
In a tense fifth set, the Spartans controlled play early, taking a 4-2 lead before the Eagles tied the match at 7-7 on a block from Doerpinghaus, Schumacher and Curtis. SJSU regained the lead at the turn but Eastern rallied to take a 10-9 advantage on an attack error from Blume. EWU would go up by two, 13-11, on a block from Fermantez and Schumacher, and would serve for match point up 14-12, but San Jose State came back to win the next three points to take a 15-14 lead. Schumacher knotted things at 15-15 with a kill but the hosts claimed the final two points, winning the set and the match.
Eastern outhit the Spartans .267 to .213, committing 20 errors to San Jose State's 31. The hosts tallied eight service aces however, keeping the Eagles out of system for parts of the match.
Blume led San Jose State with 22 kills while Mary Alice O'Reilly added 17 kills.
The Eagles continue their road trip this weekend with three matches at the USD Tournament in San Diego, Calif. Eastern opens with a match versus UC Santa Barbara on Friday at 5 p.m. before squaring off with No. 9 San Diego and top-ranked USC on Saturday.