By Layne Weitzel, TTU Sports Information
TOLEDO, Ohio – Tech continued its run of Ohio tournaments Friday with a double-header to start the Blue/Gold Invitational.
The Golden Eagles fell to host Toledo 23-25, 18-25 and 20-25, then followed with a loss to Youngstown State 15-25, 20-25 and 17-25.
Tech (2-9) began its day with Toledo (5-6), falling behind 8-1 after an 8-0 Rockets run. The Golden Eagles battled back to cut the deficit to 11-8, but the Rockets again pulled ahead 18-12 for a six-point difference. A 6-1 run by Tech got the Golden Eagles within one point, but that was as close as they could get. The Rockets would take the first set 25-23.
Tech took a 4-2 lead to open the second set, but two-straight attack errors and a Toledo kill gave the Rockets the 5-4 lead. Toledo would hold its lead to win the second set 25-18.
The Golden Eagles held on late in the third set for an 19-18 advantage, but Toledo put up two points before a Tech timeout. A 5-1 run by the Rockets gave them the third set at 25-20 and the match.
Tech recorded five team blocks, with Rachel Thomas chipping in one solo and three assists. It also served up six service aces to Toledo's three, and Allison Morrett and Liz Bossong combined for 28 of Tech's 63 digs.
"We had a much better defensive match," said head coach Dave Zelenock. "We had a couple little stints where we gave up a couple errors in a row. They unfortunately had four or five plays where it hit the line. It just happens."
Against Youngstown State (6-7), the two teams were tied at 10-10 in the first set before the Penguins went on a 12-1 run to lead 22-11. Youngstown State ended up winning that set 25-15.
Tech jumped out to a 10-7 lead in the second set, but three-straight Penguin points knotted the score at 10-10. The Golden Eagles couldn't get away from YSU after that, falling in that set 25-20.
In the third set, the score was 8-all before Youngstown State slowly pulled away, winning the set and match at 25-17.
Shealene Little led Tech with 11.5 points against the Penguins and nearly had a double-double with 11 kills and nine digs.
Tech concludes both the Blue/Gold Invitational and non-conference action vs. New Mexico (7-4). First serve is set for Saturday, Sept. 16 at 11 a.m. CT.
"They're the best team here," said Zelenock. "They're a monster physical team. It's going to be a tough match."