Kevin Sethre, Staff Writer
After going 22-9 on their way to a MIAC semifinal appearance and an NCAA National Playoff berth last season, the Augsburg volleyball team got off to a hot start to their 2019 campaign. Following a loss to California Lutheran University in the season opener, the Auggies won eight straight games on their way to a number 17 ranking in the nationwide AVCA Coaches Poll.
Over the weekend, they traveled to Dubuque, Iowa, where they participated in the Loras College Invitational and played in three games.
In the first game, Augsburg fell to the home team 3-1 despite winning the first set. One of the biggest factors in the game was hitting percentage. The Auggies had a .353 hitting percentage in the first set, which dropped to .107 in the final three. Loras had a .132 hitting percentage in the opening set, but recovered and hit .247 in the last three.
On Saturday, Augsburg played a doubleheader, which they opened up with a four-set win over UW-La Crosse. The Auggies won the first set, lost the second one, then took the next two to seal the victory. The first and last sets were both very close, with Augsburg winning both of them by a score of 26-24.
In the second game, the Auggies beat Edgewood in straight sets 25-14, 25-19, and 25-15. Augsburg’s Izzy Barr had 17 assists, bringing her up to a team-leading 224 on the season. The Auggies had a .297 hitting percentage, far better than the dismal .026 of the Eagles. The win brought Augsburg to 10-2 as they wrap up non-conference play. Despite the loss to Loras, the Auggies moved up to number 16 in the American Volleyball Coaches’ Association’s Coaches’ Poll.
This article was originally published in the September 20, 2019 issue.