USD volleyball saw both ends of the broom over the Dakota Days weekend, swept by Denver (15-1) at the Sanford Coyote Sports Center on Friday, then sweeping South Dakota State (3-15) in Brookings on Sunday.
USD vs. Denver
USD fell to defending Summit League champions Denver 25-23, 25-19, 25-23 at home on Friday. With only one loss this season, Denver hasn’t allowed a team to win more than one set since Sept. 1.
Seniors Hayley Dotseth, Taylor Wilson, and Kristina Susak each tallied 11 kills for the Coyotes, and Dotseth added 10 digs.
Despite a 3-0 match score, USD never strayed far from Denver, coming within two points on the first and final set. Head coach Leanne Williamson said a .260 hitting percentage is an improvement from past matchups.
“Offensively, we actually scored the ball. In the second and third set, we hit over .300, which was really good for us,” Williamson said. “I felt that we were in control of the match in terms of taking care of balls on our side.”
Dotseth, who leads the Summit League with 3.95 kills per set, said the Coyotes’ hitting performance against Denver assures they can hit effectively against any team in the conference.
“I think we hit really well. That can give us confidence moving forward knowing that’s the biggest team in our league and we can hit that well,” Dotseth said.
Susak said the team realized they can “turn it on” at any point during a match.
“At times we definitely saw our fight and I think we’re capable of doing that more often. It’s just making the choice to do so,” Susak said.
USD at SDSU
Two days after the loss to Denver, USD traveled to Brookings to face SDSU, a team Leanne Williamson said was going to aggressive.
“They’re going to want to come out and win, and obviously a rivalry game is a fun game to be in any way,” she said.
USD took the first set 25-21 and ran with the momentum, winning the next two 25-17, 25-13 to sweep the in-state rival.
Hayley Dotseth led the team with 16 kills, one of those being her 1000th of her Coyote career. Dotseth became the fifth athlete in USD history to record 1000 kills and 1000 digs, according to GoYotes.
Taylor Wilson, whose .374 hitting percentage is best in the Summit League, added 14 kills and four blocks.
The Coyotes now stand at 11-7 overall and 5-1 in conference play, No. 3 in the Summit League and one spot behind Omaha, whom they host at the SCSC Friday, Oct. 12 at 7 p.m.