UND volleyball nets tourney win

VICTORY: UND senior standouts contribute to successful tournament weekend.

Lisa Parlich and Ronni Munkeby were both key players in the All State Sugar Bowl Collegiate Classic that took place at Tulane University in Louisiana on Friday and Saturday.

UND went 3-0 on the weekend, taking home the tournament trophy and strengthening its record to 4-6.

The first match Friday against Florida A&M went a full five sets (25-20, 25-23, 25-20, 25-12, 15-9), UND triumphing over (2-5) FAMU. Parlich, UND’s senior co-captain, had a season high 23 kills, swinging efficiently with a hitting percentage of .568.

North Dakota had almost twice as many serving errors than Florida A&M, with a total of 12 in the five sets to their seven.

Luckily for UND, its errors were front-loaded in the first few sets.

“We made a great run at the end of the second set and were a bit unfortunate not to win it,” UND coach Ashley Hardee said. “Our serving came back to life in the final two sets to get us through,”

Friday’s second match was a quick win for the UND women, as they swept the Texas State Lady Tigers 3-0 (25-16, 25-13, 25-12), increasing their winning margin with every set.

Junior Lexi Robinson led UND in the match with a total of 12 kills, and was closely followed by freshman Anna Pioske, who put down 11. Parlich had nine kills.

Solid defense and a continuous high hitting percentage got North Dakota its third and final win of the tournament Saturday afternoon against previously undefeated tournament host Tulane (3-1).

Munkeby was vital to North Dakota’s third match, getting three kills early on and then adding a critical five more toward the end of the set, where UND came from behind with six straight points to win 26-24.

UND lost the second set 25-20 to Tulane, but came back in the next two sets (25-21, 25-20) to take the win and the title.

UND junior setter Nikki Husfeldt was named Most Valuable Player for the tournament, after she set up 36 assists and had 13 digs Saturday.

Munkeby finished with a match-high of 18 kills, and Robinson continued to play her all-around solid game, adding five blocks, eight digs and 17 kills. Parlich earned a spot on the all-tournament team, largely due to her weekend total of 45 kills with only four errors.

“Ronni Munkeby was spectacular today when we needed her and Lisa Parlich was all weekend,” Hardee said. “We played very good defense behind our block and beat a good Tulane team on its home court. The momentum from this tournament should serve us well heading into a rivalry match Monday (at South Dakota) and into the Big Sky Conference schedule next weekend.”

UND’s next game is Monday at 7 p.m. in Vermillian,  S.D.

Marie Monson is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. She can be reached at [email protected].