Wildcats upset in first round of NSIC tourney


ST. PAUL, Minn. — Top-seeded and second-ranked Wayne State’s hopes of sweeping the Northern Sun Conference regular-season and tournament titles were dashed Friday by Augustana, who pulled off a stunning upset with a 23-25, 25-18, 21-25, 25-23, 15-8 win in the opening round of the conference tournament Friday.

Wayne State come out strong, posting 15 kills and one attack error in taking the first set. Augustana rallied from a 16-11 deficit to tie the game at 23-23 before Taya Beller put home a kill and an attack error ended the first set.

Augstana rallied, limiting WSC to seven kills and a .054 attack percentage to tie the match, but Wayne State came out strong in the third set and never trailed, forcing eight Augie attack errors.

In the fourth set, Augustana broke a 19-19 tie and came back from a 23-22 deficit to tie the match and take it to a fifth set, then used that momentum to put the Wildcats away and complete the opening-round upset.

Augie outhit Wayne State 82-50 and limited the Wildcats to a .191 attack percentage. Maggie Brahmer led with 17 kllls, Beller added 16 and Kelsie Chada had 11 kills to go with 13 digs. Rachel Walker had 42 assists and 14 digs.

Jessie Brandl led the defense with 21 digs and Jordan McCormick added 13. Brahmer recorded six blocks and Beller had five.

Wayne State (29-2) awaits word on the seeding and host site for the Central Region tournament, which will be announced Sunday at 9:30 p.m. on ncaa.com.