FORT WAYNE, Ind. - The Butler volleyball team split its two season-opening matches Friday at the IPFW Volleyball Tournament, defeating Drake, 3-0, before falling to IPFW by the same score.
In the season opener Friday morning against Drake, junior Jessica Wolfe led the Bulldogs with a double-double, notching a team-high 16 kills and 13 digs.
"We played really well. It was a good first match to get under our belts," head coach Sharon Clark said. "We played great defense and had a balanced effort on offense."
BU (1-0) started quickly in the first set, jumping out to a 9-3 lead. The Bulldogs would never trail, although Drake did pull within 22-21 after a Butler service error. Butler then finished Drake off with two Wolfe kills and an ace from junior Katie Daprile to win 25-22.
With the second set tied 5-5, Butler would go on a 9-2 run to take a 14-7 lead and forcing DU to call timeout. Butler would continue to pull away, leading 22-11 at one point en route to a 25-13 win in the second set.
BU would jump ahead 12-5 and then 16-9 in the third set, eventually finishing the sweep with a 25-21 clinching set.
Daprile narrowly missed a double-double, finishing with 10 digs and eight kills while hitting .412. Sophomore Maureen Bamiro hit .333 with seven kills. Freshman setter Gina Vera, making her collegiate debut, totaled 34 assists. Junior libero Brittany Awai led the Bulldogs on defense with 18 digs.
In the nighcap versus tourney host IPFW, the Mastodons took control with a 25-20 win in the first set and managed to hold the Bulldogs at bay. BU had several chances to even the match in the second set, at one point holding a 27-26 lead. IPFW ended up rallying for a 30-28 win. In the third set, IPFW controlled throughout and finished Butler off with a 25-18 clincher.
"IPFW played with a lot of energy and they did just about everything right," Clark said. "We played our game, we just couldn't get into a rhythm."
IPFW held Butler (1-1) to .178 hitting, just hours after the Bulldogs hit .324 against Drake. Wolfe led BU with 10 kills and eight digs. Senior Porshia Allen posted nine kills and six digs while hitting .471 and Vera had 37 assists.
Butler continues at IPFW with two matches on Saturday, Aug. 29. The Bulldogs take on Eastern Illinois and Kent State, respectively.