Hamline came out strong on their home court in the opening set, powering out to a quick 7-3 lead, including three kills in that stretch from Danielle Bennett-Curry (Fy., Minneapolis, Minn.). The Cardinals tied the set at 11-11, but a kill from Lauren Fisher (Fy., Tacoma, Wash.) gave the Pipers another lead.
Hamline held the lead for the remainder of the opening set, winning it 25-23 with 18 kills in the set.
The second set started out even, with the teams tied at 5-5. A pair of Hamline errors gave the Cardinals a two point lead, however, before one of Jessica Larson’s (Sr., Pine Island, Minn.) 11 kills in the match put Saint Mary’s up by three at 8-5.
The Cardinals held the momentum from there, extending their lead in the set and taking it 25-18. They then took control of the third set early and put up a 2-1 lead heading into the fourth set.
In the fourth, the score stayed tight, with Hamline holding a 5-3 lead early. Saint Mary’s rallied, tying the set at 6-6, 7-7, and 8-8. The Cardinals took the lead for good at 9-8 on a kill by Sarah Gardner (Jr., Rochester, Minn.).
In addition to Larson’s 11 kills, Amy Kujak (So., River Falls, Wis.) tallied the same number while Gardner added 10. Tara Rasmussen (Fy., Kasson, Minn.) led the Cardinal back row with 14 digs.
Simmons had a game-high 13 kills for the Pipers while Rojas added 11. Libero Heidi Larsen (Jr., Andover, Minn.) had 28 digs to lead the Piper defense.
With the conference loss, the Pipers fall to 9-6, 0-3 MIAC. Saint Mary’s improves to 11-5, 1-2 MIAC. Hamline continues MIAC play on the road on Wednesday, September 30, traveling to St. Catherine University at 7:00 p.m.
For post-game reaction from head coach Lynette Bernardy, Simmons, and setter Jackie Kelly (Jr., Blaine, Minn.), click here.