DE PERE, Wis. – The Alverno volleyball team traveled to take on the St. Norbert Green Knights on Tuesday evening, and battled one of the top teams in the regions to a four-set loss. Alverno took the third set by a 25-23 score after dropping the first two sets by 25-14, and 25-15 scores. The Green Knights won the match with a 25-14 fourth set victory.
Alverno was led on the offensive effort by freshman Kierra Sherlock, who led the team with 15 kills and 52 total attacking attempts. Junior Neilee Newton notched 13 kills on 44 attempts, and finished the match with a double-double as she was also second on the team with 12 digs. Junior Morgan Lemner led Alverno with 13 digs, and had a pair of aces on the night.
Sophomore Isabelle Gemza had a strong day on offense, leading the team with a .417 hitting percentage as she collected five kills against no errors in 12 total attempts, while she also added five digs on the defensive side of the ball. Sophomore Alex McMath had a season-best 33 assists as she added three kills and four digs, and also led the team with three aces on the night. McMath and Newton combined on the team's lone block of the match.
Alverno fell behind early in the first set at a 14-5 advantage, before rattling off three unanswered including a kill from both Gemza and Sherlock. After a pair of points by St. Norbert, Sherlock connected on two of the next three points in the set to keep the Inferno within seven at 17-10. However the Green Knights outscored the Inferno 8-4 to close out the set.
St. Norbert opened the second set with five unanswered before a kill by McMath put an end to the Green Knight rally. The St. Norbert offense continued to put together a strong effort throughout the set as the team built up a 21-12 lead before putting the set away at 25-15.
In the third the Inferno scored first and took a 2-1 lead behind a pair of errors by St. Norbert. McMath connected on an ace to even the score at five before St. Norbert took a two-point edge. Kaminski notched a kill followed by an ace from Lemner to even the score once again before the Inferno took a one-point lead at 9-8 following an error by St. Norbert.
The teams went back-and-forth over the ensuing few points as Lemner once again put down an ace to even the score at 17 apiece. Sherlock connected on a kill, while Newton followed shortly after with one of her own. Coffey picked up her lone kill of the night at a crucial point as she gave Alverno a 22-20 lead. The Inferno ultimately took the set by a 25-23 score as McMath closed it out with an ace.
The Green Knights stormed out of the gates in the fourth set, but Alverno refused to go down as McMath picked up a kill followed by a stretch by Newton of three kills to even the score back up at six apiece. A 12-5 run by St. Norbert increased the home team's lead before the Green Knights put the set away by a 25-14 score to earn the match victory in four sets.
Alverno (1-15, 0-3 NACC) will return home to take on the Concordia Wisconsin Falcons for a 7 p.m. start inside the Reiman Gymnasium. The team will follow with another home conference match on Saturday, when the Inferno host the Wisconsin Lutheran Warriors at 12 p.m. on Saturday.