UB Volleyball lost twice at Western Michigan, to make their season record 1–13.
In the first match, on Thursday, Buffalo played extremely well and won the first two sets. The Bulls’ passing was on target, their offense sizzled, and their defense played well. Buffalo hit 0.359 and 0.316 in the first two sets, with 33 kills and making just 7 attack errors in the two sets combined. But then the wheels fell off, in the next three sets Buffalo recorded just 21 kills and Western took the next three sets, which weren’t even close.
Freshman outside hitter Milla Malik (pictured above) led the Bulls with 17 kills, while junior outside hitter Monika Šimkova had 12 kills (and just one attack error), and senior middle blocker Lexi Nordmann had 11 kills (and just one attack error). For the match, Buffalo continues to struggle (as they have in most games) with serving, committing 15 service errors while scoring just 5 aces; and they allowed WMU 9 aces.
In the second match, Buffalo lost all three sets, although these set losses were relatively close. Buffalo took a commanding 19–10 lead in the second set, on the heels of a 13–1 run, but despite the big lead, Western put together their own run to take the set 25–23. Buffalo managed to hit just 0.150 for the match.
Malik again led the Bulls with 10 kills, while freshman right side Emma Gielas had 9 kills and sophomore middle blocker Courtney Okwara had 8. In the “good news” column, Buffalo committed just 3 service errors and scored 3 aces.
- Sophomore libero Jenna Sonnenberg had 26 digs, her career high, in the first match, and 13 in the second match, both team highs in each match.
- Nordmann led the team in blocking across the two matches with 6, while Malik had 5.
- Sophomore outside hitter Abby Leigh remains unavailable (I assume due to injury).
- Great moments in MAC Volleyball History: did you know that at one time, the NCAA volleyball single game attendance record of 8,543 was held by Western Michigan? It happened in the first round of the 1983 NCAA volleyball tournament, when the Broncos defeated #7 Nebraska. The Broncos would go on to beat Purdue in the Sweet 16 and then lost 3–2 to UCLA in the Regional Final, the only time a MAC team would advance that far in the NCAA Tournament. This was part of four consecutive years when the Broncos made the tournament, twice advancing to the Sweet 16. The streak would end in 1985 when WMU did not make the tournament, but they still played a big part in the tournament that year, as they hosted the Final Four in Kalamazoo.