St. Louis, Missouri – The 11th-ranked Tiger volleyball team scored a pair of 3-1 victories during the opening day of action at the East to West Battle Tournament.
Trinity began the day with a 27-29, 25-22, 25-23, 25-18 win over sixth-ranked Juniata (PA) College, then won 25-16, 19-25, 25-12, 25-20 against California Lutheran University.
The Tigers rattled off the first six points against Juniata and led by as many as eight points (22-14) late in the opening set. Juniata used a 9-1 run to pull in front 25-24, though, and survived two set points before eventually escaping with the win.
The two teams were fairly even in the second with Trinity's four-point lead being the largest of the set for either team. Juniata pulled to within one point (22-21) late, but the Tigers scored three of the next four to close things out and tie the match.
Trailing 9-10 in the third, Trinity scored nine of the next 11 points to take control of the set, then held off two late rallied by Juniata to take a 2-1 match lead. The Tigers never trailed in the fourth set, turning a narrow 8-6 margin into a 19-12 lead that essentially clinched the match.
Trinity never trailed in the opening set against Cal Lutheran, turning an early 10-6 margin into a 21-12 lead and cruised to the victory. After falling behind 10-11 in the second, Cal Lutheran scored 10 straight points to take control of the second and tie the match 1-1.
The Tigers used a late 9-0 run to break open the third set and take a 2-1 lead. Aside from a 9-9 tie, Trinity led the entire fourth set to close out the match in victory.
Trinity improved to 8-2 on the season with today's results. Juniata dropped to 4-3 overall with the loss to the Tigers, while Cal Lutheran fell to 6-3 this season.
Annie Rose Leggett led the Tigers with 20 digs to go with 10 kills for the team's only double-double against Juniata. She also had a team-best three service aces. Leggett also led the team with 11 digs against Cal Lutheran, adding seven kills and a pair of blocks.
Emily Ellis hit .458 and recorded a team-high 14 kills and seven blocks in the win over the Eagles, then followed with seven kills and a match-best eight blocks in the Friday finale.
Avery Tuggle finished with 12 kills and nine digs in the opener, as well as tying Ellis for the team lead with seven blocks. Tuggle also tied for the match lead with nine kills to go with eight digs against CLU.
Katrina Lieberman edged out teammate Lexie Acevedo 22-21 and 17-16 in assists for both matches, though Acevedo held the advantage with nine digs in each contest. Acevedo also led the team with three aces against Cal Lutheran.
Sami Lin reached double figures in digs for both matches, tallying 19 against Juniata and 10 more against CLU to finish the day.
Trinity takes on hosting Washington (MO) University at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, September 14, to finish off tournament action.