NDSU Outlasts Illinois-Chicago in Five, Falls to Host Central Michigan 3-2

MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. (NDSU Athletics) -- North Dakota State rallied from a 2-0 deficit to outlast Illinois-Chicago 3-2 (23-25, 25-19, 25-18, 37-35, 15-9) in a five-set marathon and dropped a 3-2 (25-22, 19-25, 25-22, 14-25, 15-12) decision to host Central Michigan at the Chippewa Invitational on Friday, Sept. 6, at McGuirk Arena.

NDSU (2-3) is scheduled to close out tournament play against Eastern Illinois (0-5) at 11 a.m. CT on Saturday, Sept. 7.

Allie Mauch put the Bison ahead 7-1 in the fifth set against UIC with one of her 12 kills. It was a group effort as NDSU took advantage of alert plays from Alexis Bachmeier, Kalli Hegerle, Kelley Johnson, Maggie Steffen, Bella Lien, Kirstin Tidd and Emily Halverson to stay ahead of the Illinois-Chicago, which lost for the first time in five matches.

Illinois-Chicago (5-1) took the first two sets and came back from a deficit in set one. However, North Dakota State thundered back, winning the third and fighting back in the fourth. That fourth set featured 16 ties and six lead changes.

Hegerle recorded her second ‘triple-double’ in four games with 10 kills, 22 assists and 11 digs, while counterpart Johnson had 21 assists and 12 digs. Klos came up with a team-high 19 digs.

Bachmeier connected for a team-high 13 kills and collected 15 digs, while Mauch had 12 kills and Halverson finished with 10 kills and four blocks. Lien claimed a match-high five blocks as NDSU held a 12-5 advantage in team blocks. UIC hit .136 compared to .128 for the Bison.

North Dakota State took an 11-9 lead in the fifth set against Central Michigan on kills from Halverson and Steffen, but the Chippewas reeled off four straight points to gain control.

Bachmeier connected for a career-high 19 kills to go along with 15 digs as the Bison outhit Central Michigan .260 to .190 and held an 11-3 advantage in team blocks led by five each from Mauch and Lien. Mauch and Halverson each had 10 kills.

Hegerle completed her third ‘triple-double’ in five matches with 11 kills, 13 digs and 20 assists. Johnson contributed 28 assists and 14 digs. Hanger and Klos both added 15 digs.