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U Mary's Amanda Lopes goes up for a block against Northern State's Hailey Busch on Thursday.

WILL KINCAID, TRIBUNE

The Northern Sun opener was a dud for the University of Mary volleyball team.

The Marauders hosted No. 24-ranked Northern State on Thursday night at the McDowell Activity Center, and the Wolves rolled to a 25-9, 25-15, 25-10 sweep.

Coach Thais Franca wasn’t happy with the way her team struggled in the opener, and said it went back to the previous day’s practice.

“It’s frustrating because we didn’t have a great practice yesterday and we just … the thing is (NSU) didn’t even play 100 percent – they just did whatever was needed to just win the game and we didn’t take advantage of it, we just didn’t show up at all,” Franca said.

“Not enough fundamentals were on the court. No pass, no set, no hitting, no block, no defense, no nothing. There wasn’t one fundamental that could hold us. Today was just really bad.”

Northern State came out flying, taking the opening game 25-9. The Wolves hit .565 during the opening set, with Hailey Busch recording five kills and Jenna Reiff four.

U-Mary struggled to get going, hitting .000 with five kills and five errors.

Laura Snyder had the hot hand for Northern State in the second game. She had four kills during a 7-0 Wolves run that turned a 4-4 tie into an 11-3 NSU advantage.

Northern State finished the game on an 8-3 run, giving NSU a 25-15 win and a 2-0 lead.

The Wolves opened the third game on a 13-1 run and finished the sweep with a 25-10 decision.

“It was just not showing up,” Franca said. “The entire group, that’s the first time that’s happened. Even when we struggled a little bit in the past, we had two or three players holding us in there but today no one … could handle the pressure well.

“Frustrating to see, especially because I know what this team is capable of.”

Snyder led the Wolves (8-1, 1-0 NSIC), hitting .667 with nine kills. Busch hit .500 with nine kills and Jenna Reiff had eight kills while hitting .800.

Ashley Rozell had 28 assists and four aces, and Northern State finished with 22 blocks, led by Reiff with six and Busch with five.

Lauren Randall had eight kills and Katja Berge six to lead U-Mary, but the Marauders hit .012 for the match to Northern’s .516.

Amanda Lopes had 18 assists and Jody Heidel led U-Mary with eight digs.

“We’ve got a few things to work on. We'll see how we do against Moorhead at their place,” Franca said.

The Marauders (4-6, 0-1 NSIC) travel to Minnesota State-Moorhead on Saturday.

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