Four teams entered D.J. Sokol Arena on Friday and there were to be only two teams left standing at the end of the day.
For scouting reports on all of the teams and a schedule for the Big East Volleyball Tournament, click here.
#1 Creighton 3, #4 Marquette 2
#2 Villanova 3, #3 Xavier 0
Creighton 3, Marquette 2: This was a game that featured two of the top hitters in the conference in Creighton’s Jaali Winters and Marquette’s Taylor Louis, and it did not disappoint. The Bluejays held off a ferocious Marquette rally that brought the Golden Eagles back into the game. Creighton looked it was going to sweep Marquette, until the Bluejays fell far behind in the third set. The Golden Eagles held a 19-8 lead to start, before Creighton came back to make it competitive. Marquette finally put the third set away and took the fourth to force a fifth set. Creighton pulled itself together to avoid the shocking upset and win in the final set. The Bluejays won: 25-19, 25-16, 21-25, 20-25, 15-10.
Winters led the Bluejays with 21 kills and 17 digs. Maggie Baumert had 45 assists, 15 digs, and seven blocks. Jess Bird chipped in 14 kills.
For Marquette, Taylor Louis finished with a game-high 27 kills. Lauren Houg led the defense with 35 digs.
Villanova 3, Xavier 0: Both teams seemed very similar in nature on paper. After today, the Wildcats proved to be the better team as they swept the Musketeers. Originally projected to finish seventh in the conference, they have crashed the party and will be moving onto the championship game. Villanova beat Xavier in straight sets: 25-20, 25-19, 25-17. Each set featured the same theme, both teams would trade blows until the Wildcats went out on a run to give them the lead. Once the Wildcats held a comfortable lead, they never gave it up. They used a balanced attack to get it done.
Emma Pettit was a distributing machine, chugging out 39 assists. Amanda Pedersen-Henry had a team-high 13 kills. Claire Crutchfield added 10 kills. Gabby Pethokoukis and Allie Loitz had eight apiece. Lauren Carpenter rounded it off with seven.
For Xavier, Big East Player of the Year Abbey Bessler finished with 13 kills. Mackenzi Humm had 15 assists.
The Wildcats will take on the Bluejays tomorrow afternoon at 3 p.m. in the Big East Championship Game.