If the Ashland University volleyball team went to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan looking to make a positive statement to the rest of the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, then mission accomplished.
The Eagles swept the two-match trip this weekend, finishing it off on Saturday (Sept. 26) with a 3-2 (22-25, 27-25, 25-16, 16-25, 15-12) victory at Northern Michigan. Ashland improves to 8-4 overall and 3-1 in the GLIAC, while the Wildcats fall to 10-3, 2-2.
The key in AU's victory was defense. In their three sets won, the Eagles kept NMU to an aggregate hitting percentage of -0.44.
Ashland's offense was paced by junior outside hitters Alli Cudworth (17 kills) and Casey Clark (11). Defensively, freshman libero Kaitlin Bean (16), junior setter Mallory Slyder (15) and Clark (13) all had double-digit digs.
Slyder added 37 assists in the victory.
Ashland will return to the court on Tuesday (Sept. 29) at 7 p.m. to begin a five-match homestand at Kates Gymnasium against Lake Erie.