(Story courtesy of Trinity University Athletics)
CEDAR RAPIDS, IA – Trinity's seventh-ranked volleyball team had its 23-match winning streak snapped in a 3-1 loss to #6 Johns Hopkins (MD) University in Friday's NCAA Semifinal Match. Photo Album | Video
The Tigers lost 22-25 and 15-25 in the first two sets, then rallied for a 25-21 win in the third. Trinity finished with a 17-25 loss in game four.
Trinity started the first set with a 5-2 lead, but Johns Hopkins led most of the way. The Tigers trailed 9-10 when the Blue Jays scored eight of the next nine to take an 18-10 lead. Trinity stormed back with a 10-1 run that put the Tigers in front 20-19, but Johns Hopkins closed the set by scoring five of the final six points to take the 1-0 match lead.
Johns Hopkins slipped out to a 12-7 lead, but Trinity battled to within two points by scoring four of the next five. The lead was still two when the Blue Jays scored seven unanswered to go up 23-14, then traded points with the Tigers down the stretch to go up 2-0.
The third set was similar to the first two as Johns Hopkins controlled the action early, easing out to an 8-3 lead to start. The Tigers worked their way back to within two, but got no closer until a 5-1 run tied things up at 17-17. Johns Hopkins scored three straight, though, and looked ready to sweep the match. Trinity scored six unanswered to pull in front 23-20 and held on to force another set.
In the fourth, Johns Hopkins took a 7-3 lead to start and slowly built up a 19-11 advantage later in the set. Three straight Trinity points knocked the lead back down to five, but that would be as close as the Tigers would get as the Blue Jays out-scored Trinity 6-3 to finish the match.
Trinity falls to 37-5 this season, losing for the first time since early October – a span of 23 matches that is the longest for the Tiger volleyball program since a 26-match win streak in 2007.
The Tigers will finish third in the NCAA Tournament for the second time in school history and for the first time since 2002. Trinity was also the national runner-up after falling in the NCAA Championship Match against Central (IA) College in 1999.
This was the first meeting in school history against Johns Hopkins.
Emily Ellis led the Tigers with 10 kills and nine blocks in today's match, as well as hitting .300 over the four sets.
Annie Rose Leggett led Trinity with 14 digs, adding eight kills, three blocks, and two aces.
Lexie Acevedo tied Leggett for the team lead with two service aces, and she also led the team with 17 assists.
Marisa Amarino had 16 assists to go with nine digs, while Avery Tuggle had 12 digs and seven kills.
Senior Maggi Linker finished her Tiger career with three blocks and three kills, while Sarah Williammee recorded four blocks to go with six kills and four digs.