OMAHA, Neb. — South Dakota battled back from an 0-2 deficit to upset No. 14 Creighton Volleyball in five sets on Friday night at D.J. Sokol Arena. Scores of the match in favor of the visiting Coyotes were 21-25, 19-25, 25-23, 25-23, 15-13.
South Dakota (1-2) snapped Creighton’s 12-match home win streak that ranked as the nation’s fifth-longest streak, as the Bluejays fell to 2-1 on the young season.
Creighton trailed for much of the first set before a well-timed 8-0 rally put the Bluejays in position to take the first set. Trailing 18-14, Erica Kostelac authored a pair of aces during the 8-0 run to put CU in front for good. Emily Bressman’s second career ace closed out the first set, 25-21, in CU’s favor. The Bluejays hit .297 in the first set with Keeley Davis (5 kills, 4 digs) Jaela Zimmerman (5 kills, .444%) and Grace Nelson (7 digs) pacing the club to help offset six kills and five digs by South Dakota standout Elizabeth Juhnke.
The Bluejays never trailed in the second set, as Davis served a 4-0 run to open the frame. CU’s lead ballooned as large at 14-7 and 20-10 before USD trimmed its deficit to 21-17. The Bluejays pulled away down the stretch to close out a 25-19 victory on a Coyotes service miscue.
The third set was quite competitive, featuring 11 ties and six lead changes. USD pulled ahead 17-14 thanks to a 5-0 run, only to see the Bluejays answer with the next three points. Zimmerman tied it at 23-all with a kill off a USD overpass, but the Coyotes after back-to-back errors by the Bluejays. USD closed out the set on a block by Juhnke and Madison Harms, its sixth block of the set.
Creighton led most of the fourth set, as USD didn’t move ahead until back-to-back blocks put the visitors ahead 23-22. Creighton would fight off one set point chance by USD before a kill from Sami Slaughter forced a fifth set. Both teams had five blocks in the fourth set, as Creighton hit .053 in 38 swings.
South Dakota led early in the fifth set, falling behind 8-6, before Ally Van Eekeren served up a 4-0 run to put Creighton in front. The Coyotes regained the lead 12-11 on their 17th block of the evening before Kostelac hammered home a kill to tie it. The teams exchanged sideouts as it went to 13-all before instant replay overturned a USD hitting error and gave the Coyotes a match point opportunity at 14-13. On that match point, Juhnke put down her 20th kill of the evening, as CU had two defensive touches but could not keep the ball in play.
Zimmerman led Creighton with a career-high 19 kills, and Davis had her third career double-double with 14 kills and 16 digs.
Creighton and South Dakota will meet again on Sunday at 2 p.m. in Vermillion, S.D.