OMAHA–(CU Athletics Sept. 29)–Playing its first home match in nearly four weeks, the No. 16 Creighton Volleyball team stormed past St. John’s with a 25-14, 25-23, 25-18 sweep on Friday night inside D.J. Sokol Arena.
Creighton improved to 11-3 overall and 2-1 in BIG EAST play with the win, while the Red Storm fell to 11-5 on the year and 3-1 in league play in its first BIG EAST road match of the season.
Sophomore Ava Martin and freshman Destiny Ndam-Simpson each recorded a team-high nine kills, while fifth-year senior Kiana Schmitt added eight kills and six blocks. Junior setter Kendra Wait dished out her 3,000thcareer assist in the first set and finished with a match-high 26 assists. The Bluejays closed the match with 34 kills, seven aces, 48 digs and 11 blocks on .225 hitting.
Erin Jones led the Red Storm with a match-high 12 hits and added nine assists and five digs, while Rashanny Solano Smith recorded a match-high 21 digs. St. John’s finished the match 30 kills, 38 digs, and five blocks on .054 hitting.
Creighton never trailed in the first set, using a 5-0 run on Sydney Breissinger’s serve to jump to a 7-2 lead. A 4-0 serve the next time Breissinger served moved the CU margin to 19-10, and a back-row kill from Martin closed out the first frame. Creighton had five blocks in the first set, including three from Schmitt, while Martin and Schmitt combined for nine kills on 16 errorless swings. The Bluejays hit .345 in the opener and held SJU to -.048 hitting in 42 swings.
The only deficit CU faced all night came at the start of the third set, when CU fell behind 3-0. The Jays used another 5-0 Breissinger serving binge to move in front 8-6. Creighton would push the margin to 15-10, only to see the Red Storm draw within one at 21-20 to prompt a CU timeout. But the Bluejays won a challenge at 23-21 that led to replay of the point, and CU took a 2-0 lead in the match when Lucrezia Lodi’s serve at 24-23 sailed long. The miscue was one of five for SJU in the second set, whereas Creighton had four aces of its own in the second set.
Sky McCune authored a 5-0 run to open the final set as Creighton raced to a 10-2 advantage. The Bluejays led 17-8, only to watch SJU close within three at 19-16. The Johnnies momentum was stymied when McCune’s serve reception fell over the net for her first career kill to give CU a 20-16 edge. Martin would serve the final three points, capping the sweep with an ace for the 25-18 victory. Creighton limited SJU to -.143 hitting in 35 swings in the final set as Destiny Ndam-Simpson led all players with four kills and Ellie Bolton notched six digs in the finale.
Creighton returns to action on Sunday at 1 p.m. for a match against Seton Hall.
NOTES: Creighton improved to 167-33 all-time while playing its 200th home match inside D.J. Sokol Arena … Creighton has now 27 straight home matches against BIG EAST teams … Nebraska has won 13 straight conference home openers and is 19-2 in league home openers under Kirsten Bernthal Booth … Creighton has won nine straight matches against St. John’s in Omaha … Creighton avoided consecutive conference losses, something that it hasn’t done since 2011 … Creighton is 20-2 in its last 22 matches after a five-set contest … Creighton has won 14 straight matches after a five-set loss … Creighton has won 21 straight matches after a loss, not losing consecutive contests since starting the 2019 campaign 0-2. Every other team in the nation (all 343 of them) has had a multi-match losing streak since then … Kendra Wait became the fifth Bluejay to reach 3,000 career assists on an assist to make it 20-11 in the first set. The milestone assist came in her 80th career match, third-fastest in program history … Creighton has won 210 straight matches vs. conference teams when leading a match 2-0 … Ellie Bolton’s streak of 12 straight matches with an ace was snapped. It had been tied for the second-longest streak in program history … Creighton is now 8-0 this season when winning the second set … Norah Sis, who missed her eighth straight match, was honored pregame in recognition of her passing 1,000 career kills in CU’s last home weekend (Sept. 2 vs. LSU) … Creighton finished the month of September with a 9-2 record … Creighton is now 156-15 all-time in BIG EAST regular-season action.