Seawolves overcome Saints, 3-1
ANCHORAGE - Setter Kimya Jafroudi delivered another fine all-around performance Thursday to lead the Alaska Anchorage volleyball team to a 23-25, 25-13, 25-18, 25-15 victory over Saint Martin's at the Wells Fargo Sports Complex.
The Seawolves (13-5, 8-2 GNAC) also got 17 kills from freshman outside hitter Katelynn Zanders as they won their third straight and moved into a second-place tie with 21st-ranked Central Washington in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference standings.
The Saints (4-10, 2-8) were led by seven kills and 15 digs from sophomore outside hitter Kristyn Ross as the visitors from Lacey, Wash., lost for the 10th straight time to the Seawolves.
Saint Martin's started hot with .300 hitting in the opening set and held on despite a late 6-0 UAA run that drew the hosts within 24-23.
UAA trailed 8-5 early in the second before turning the match around with a 10-point surge. Freshman Sarah Johnson notched one of her 10 kills to start the onslaught, then served the next nine points, including a pair of aces.
The third set was a tight until the Seawolves got consecutive kills from Breanne Sytnyk and Julia Mackey, followed by an ace from Jafroudi to make it 19-15. After a service error, Sytnyk put up a solo block to start another 4-0 spurt that sealed it.
Saint Martin's forged a 9-8 lead early in the fourth before the Seawolves ended all doubt with another big run, getting three kills by Mackey during a 10-2 surge.
The Seawolves tied their season-high with 14 aces, including career-high-tying totals for Jafroudi (6) and Johnson (3). Jafroudi, a senior from Huntington Beach, Calif., also equaled her career-high with four kills, while delivering 47 assists and 13 digs. It was her third straight match with double-digit digs.
Johnson, meanwhile, posted 10 digs to increase her team lead in double-doubles to seven. Mackey, another freshman, finished with 12 kills, and junior middle blocker Jodi Huddleston had 10 kills on .444 hitting.
Sytnyk, a freshman middle blocker from Manitoba, played in only two sets but gave the Seawolves a huge lift with six kills and five total blocks, while junior libero Siobhan Johanson had a match-high 17 digs.
The Seawolves have only three home matches left in their final eight contests, starting with Saturday's 7 p.m. showdown against Western Oregon (13-5, 6-3) at the WFSC.
NOTES: UAA clinched a .500 record and can clinch its unprecedented fifth straight winning record with one more victory ... Jafroudi's six aces and UAA's 14 tied personal- and team-season-highs, both set Sept. 7 in a 3-1 home win over Dixie State ... Jafroudi equaled her career-high in kills for the second time in three matches (Sept. 11 at SPU) and the third time overall ... UAA's 10 straight wins over SMU extends its longest streak against any GNAC opponent since the founding of the league in 2001 ... prior to SMU's first-set win Thursday, UAA had won 27 of the last 28 sets between the clubs.