LINCOLN — On paper, Creighton had a great chance to win the second set against Baylor. The Bluejays committed just one hitting error and hit at a higher percentage than the Bears.
However, the No. 18 Bluejays gave up a late 6-1 run and struggled serving while committing five service errors in the set, which was also the difference on the scoreboard.
Those errors helped the 20th-ranked Bears sweep Creighton 25-20, 25-20, 25-20 Saturday afternoon at the Devaney Center.
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“We did some good things, we fought, but I thought we got nervous, particularly behind the service line,” Creighton coach Kirsten Bernthal Booth said. “We are not going to have success if we get passive.”
Creighton finished with 13 service errors as five players had more than one miscue from behind the line.
In the first set, after a tie at 8-8, neither team led by more than one point as they split the next few rallies. Then, behind four kills from junior outside hitter Yossiana Pressley, the Bears closed the set with a 6-1 run.
The second set followed a similar script as the teams battled back and forth until another 6-1 run gave Baylor a 20-14 lead. Pressley added another three kills during the decisive run.
She finished with 19 kills and a .351 hitting percentage. Marieke van der Mark finished with eight kills at a .538 clip, while Shelly Stafford had seven kills on 15 swings and no errors.
Things got ugly early in the third set. Ten straight rallies ended in either a hitting or service error. Fortunately for the Bluejays, they came out ahead on the exchange with a 7-3 rally for a 10-6 lead. However, errors allowed the Bears to creep back and take control with a 4-0 lead to go up 19-16.
Senior middle blocker Megan Ballenger led a balanced Creighton attack with eight kills. Keeley Davis, Jaela Zimmerman and Naomi Hickman each added five kills.
Booth isn’t worried about Creighton’s 0-2 start because the Jays played two ranked opponents in Baylor and Nebraska. However, the Bluejays will need to cut down on the errors to be more competitive in the future.
“Going on big runs against these type of teams is going to be tough,” Booth said. “It’s more that we gave up runs was the issue. (Assistant coach) Craig (Dyer) pointed out that we gave up a three-point run in every rotation today. That concerns me.”
Creighton (0-2)...........20 20 20—1
Baylor (2-0)................25 25 25—3
CU (kills-aces-blocks): Ballenger 19-0-1, Hickman 5-2-2, Davis 5-0-1, Zimmerman 5-0-0, Kostelac 3-1-2, Cole 3-0-0, Bressman 1-0-0, Welty 1-0-0. Totals: 31-3-6.
BU: Pressley 19-0-3, van der Mark 8-0-1, Stafford 7-0-2, McGhee 3-0-2, Lockin 3-0-1, Johnson 2-0-0, Bramschreiber 1-1-0, Milana 1-0-0, Coleman 0-1-0, Wulf 0-1-0. Totals: 44-3-7.
Set assists: CU 27 (Cole 23, Witt 2, Zimmerman 2), BU 41 (Lockin 34, Hunt 2, Wulf 1, Stafford 1, Pressley 1, Bramschreiber 1, Milana 1).