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Crawford, Terrill lead Norse to tournament victory

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Laura Crawford and Tristen Simpson celebrate after earning a point. The Norse would lose to Cleveland State in five sets.

Laura Crawford and Tristen Simpson celebrate after earning a point. The Norse would lose to Cleveland State in five sets.

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colin_johnson

Laura Crawford and Tristen Simpson celebrate after earning a point. The Norse would lose to Cleveland State in five sets.

Michael Canizales, Contributor

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Sophomore outside hitter Laura Crawford earned tournament MVP honors and Horizon League Offensive Player of the Week after leading the Norse to the Duquesne Invitational title with victories over Robert Morris, Duquesne and Canisius college last weekend at the A.J. Palumbo Center.

Freshman libero Ashton Terrill averaged 4.80 digs per set and had double-digit digs in each showing to earn Defensive Player of the Week and all-tournament team for her efforts in the back row, and junior outside hitter Haley Libs averaged 12.30 points and 14.70 digs to earn all-tournament team as well.

“Ashton had a great first weekend of her college career,” head coach Liz Hart said. “She settled in the last two matches and helped the team win the Duquesne third set with her aces. She continues to improve each week and get comfortable in our different defenses.”

The Norse hit .238 over the course of the tournament and held opponents to .121.

NKU sits atop of the Horizon League standings (3-0) and return home when they host Seattle, Sacramento State and Bowling Green in the NKU Invitational tournament at Regents Hall Friday and Saturday, Sept. 8-9.

Game 1: NKU 3 Robert Morris 0

Crawford’s 15 kills coupled with Haley Libs 11 powered the NKU volleyball team to their first sweep of an opponent this season as the Norse took a 25-13, 25-20 and 25-18 win over Robert Morris University Friday afternoon.

Crawford had her first career double-double with 15 kills and 15 digs while Libs recorded her own double-double respectively with 11 kills and a match high 16 digs.

Two Norse players have not had kills-digs double-doubles in a sweep against an opponent since Mount Saint Joseph on Oct.21, 2007.

Ashton Terrill finished with double-digit digs and 14 scoops in her black and gold career debut.

Freshman middle blocker Kailin Gentile enjoyed her successful debut as well by posting 6 kills and a .308 attack percentage.  

The Colonials were led by Maria Alfano who finished with a .462 hitting percentage. Brianna Frakes finished with 17 assists and 9 digs while Whitney Brown finished the match with 10 assists and 9 digs.

NKU hit .300 for the match, while RMU was held to .153. The Norse also held a (49-30) kill advantage while Robert Morris held the edge on serving (4-2) and blocks (7.5-4.0).

Game 2: NKU 3 Duquesne 1

The Norse stood firm in a highly contested 4 set battle with Duquesne to win 25-22, 23-25, 25-19 and 25,20 Friday night.

Crawford led the charge with a career high 20 kills and 16 digs, while Libs added 15 kills and 14 digs. The last time two NKU attackers had a double-double in the same match was Nov. 14, 2015 against Cleveland St.

Shelby Olson contributed with 41 assists and narrowly missing out on her first double-double with 9 digs.

Duquesne was led by senior middle hitter Abbie Trzeciak who had a team high 16 kills. Sophomore setter Dani Suiter finished the game with a double-double in assists (46) and sigs(14).

The Dukes finished the game with 55 kills and 80 digs as compared to NKU’s 47 kills and 67 digs.

However, the Norse out hit Duquesne .186 – .143 and held an 11-7 block advantage.

Game 3: NKU 3 Canisius 0

The Norse took first place in the Duquesne Invitational after claiming a 3-0 victory over Canisius on Saturday afternoon at the A.J. Palumbo Center. The Norse, who improve to 3-0, swept the Golden Griffins with set scores of 25-19, 25-18 and 25-11.

Tournament MVP Laura Crawford fell just shy of three straight double-doubles by finishing with 9 kills and 9 digs.

Terrill had her second straight 15-plus-dig match and Libs had her third straight double-digit dig match (14) along with 8 kills.

The Blue and Gold were led by Leah Simmons and Claire Leonard by tallying seven kills and six kills apiece. Cassidy Ceriani recorded 21 assists and Lopez Acosta, notched 19 digs for Canisius.

NKU outhit the Golden Griffins  .245 to .055.

Over the course of the tournament, both Crawford and Libs averaged double-doubles, with Crawford averaging 14.67 kills and 12.33 digs a match while Libs averaged 11.33 kills and 14.67 digs a match.

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Crawford, Terrill lead Norse to tournament victory