Golden Eagles fall to No. 18 Purdue to open Ball State Invitational

MUNCIE, Ind. - The Tennessee Tech volleyball team gave No. 18 Purdue all it could handle Friday evening, but fell in three tight games in the Golden Eagles' first match of the Ball State Invitational.

Tech (1-3) will return to action Saturday against host Ball State, then wrap up their visit to Muncie with a match againt Southern Illinois.

The No. 18 Boilermakers moved to 4-0 on the season with the sweep, winning the match 25-21, 25-16 and 25-18 behind a balanced offensive attack and a dominating performance at the net.

Purdue, one of the tallest team's in the nation, had 14 total team blocks against Tech, while the Golden Eagles came up with three.

Senior Jessica Asplund had a strong outing on the attack, posting a team-high nine kills with only one error for a .615 hitting percentage. Sphomore Leah Meffert also had nine kills in the match.

Senior setter Kappy Lang produced a double-double in her return to her hometown, posting 27 assists and 11 digs. Katie Kenline led Tech's defensive efforts with 13 digs.

Seniors Danita Merlau and Stephanie Lynch each racked up 10 kills, while sophomore Kristen Arthurs tallied eight putdowns and a match-high nine blocks. Redshirt sophomore Lisa Pierce added six blocks to the Purdue effort.

The highlight of the match for the Golden Eagles was a rally in the first set which pushed Purdue to the limit before claiming the 25-21 win. Down 20-13, Tech countered with six straight points to slice the margin to 20-19, before Purdue scored five of the last seven to close out the 25-21 win.