NEW ORLEANS, La. – The Loyola women’s volleyball team wrapped up the Hampton Inn Wolfpack Invitational today going 3-2 for the entire weekend. This morning the Wolfpack posted a 3-0 victory (26-24, 25-23, 25-22) over the St. Thomas Houston Celts, extending their winning streak to nine matches before later falling to the Missouri Baptist Spartans 0-3 (21-25, 20-25, 21-25) and the Texas A&M Kingsville Javelinas 0-3 (21-25, 14-25, 1-25). Loyola is now 12-7 on the season.
Junior Kailey Tuthil led the Wolfpack offensive attack this morning versus the Celts as she posted the team-high 11 kills. Junior co-captain Samantha Worsham added her 10th double-double on the season with 26 assists and 13 digs. Freshman O’Neal McMullan also contributed with a career-best five service aces.
Evon Welch of St. Thomas had the most kills of any player in the match with 14. Stephanie Biediger also supplied a double-double 10 kills and 10 digs.
Nine victories in a row are the most since Tommy Harold took the reigns as head coach. The previous best was eight victories in 2004 which was Harold’s second season. The program’s longest winning streak is 15 matches. The Wolfpack won 15 consecutive matches once in 2001 and again the following season in 2002.
In Loyola’s second match of the day, the ‘Pack suffered a 0-3 loss to the Missouri Baptist Spartans. McMullan led the offense as she racked up 11 kills. Tuthill followed closely behind garnering nine. Worsham added 24 assists, nine digs, and three service aces. She is now ranked 11th in the NAIA in aces per game with 0.630 and 14th in total service aces with 40. Senior co-captain Amanda Oldani had 12 digs for the match.
The Spartans had two players with double-digits in kills. It was the 6-3 junior outside hitter, Casey Chernin leading the way with the match high 14 kills. The senior middle blocker Megan Moore was close behind with 10. Moore also had a 0.692 hitting percentage for the match. Lauren Stuckel had a double-double with 32 assists and 11 digs. Tracey Abell led the defense with 17 digs.
Rounding out the Invitational, the Texas A&M Kingsville Javelinas finished strong defeating Loyola. Freshman Lauren Brand tallied seven kills. Worsham posted another double-double, making it her 11th on the year with 13 assists and 10 digs. Oldani gathered another 12 digs for the match.
The Javelinas also had two players with double-digit kill numbers. Stephanie Johns finished with 12 kills. Lakeshia Craft finished with 11 and hit for a .625 percentage. Kalinda Graves led all defensive players with 13 digs while Sondra Cui dished out an impressive 41 assists.
Next up for the ‘Pack will be a home match in The DEN against the University of West Alabama Tuesday Oct. 11 at 7 p.m. CST. Tickets will be available at the door $6 for adults and $3 for children. For additional information, please call (504)864-PACK.