INDIANAPOLIS — Santa Clara volleyball wrapped up play at the Bulldog Brawl on Saturday with a three-set loss against tournament host Butler. The Bulldogs defeated the Broncos 25-19, 25-23, 25-22 in Hinkle Fieldhouse.
The Broncos finish the tournament at 1-2. They were swept by Cleveland State on Friday morning before topping Kent State in four sets on Friday afternoon.
Each team's top attacker turned in an efficient day as Brooke Gregory had 14 kills on .400 hitting for the Bulldogs (2-9) and Kamrin Caoili hit .423 with 13 kills for the Broncos (5-7). Butler hit .246 as a team to Santa Clara's .146 and the Bulldogs outblocked the Broncos 12-5.
Santa Clara's Tessie Powers led all players with 30 assists and added 13 digs for a double-double and Allison Kantor had 11 kills for the Broncos. Butler's Melody Davidson and Bri Lilly tied for the match lead with six blocks apiece.
Butler's closing power made the difference in all three sets. The Bulldogs finished the first set on a 6-2 run, the second set by winning six straight points and the third set by taking five of the last seven points.
Gregory set the tone for the Bulldogs in the opening stanza with nine kills, the most by any player in a single set for the match. Once Butler went ahead 8-6, the team maintained at least a two-point lead the rest of the way.
Caoili came alive in the second set for the Broncos, churning out seven kills on 11 attempts with only one attack error. Michelle Shaffer served up two aces and Allison Kantor had two kills in a 6-0 Santa Clara run that put the team ahead 19-13. Santa Clara also led 23-19 prior to Butler's set-ending 6-0 run that Lilly sparked with two kills and two blocks.
Big runs dictated the middle and latter parts of the third set. Butler won four points in a row and eight of 10 to take a 17-14 lead. Kantor and Caoili tallied two kills apiece as the Broncos answered with a 5-1 spree to take a 19-18 lead. The Bulldogs took four of the next five points and seven of 10 overall to close out the match.
Santa Clara begins West Coast Conference play Thursday night at San Francisco. First serve is set for 7 p.m.
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