HONOLULU – Freshman Aleksandra Kazala registered her first double-double with a career-high 12 kills and 13 digs, but the American University volleyball team fell to Iowa in four sets on the final day of the Hawaiian Airlines Wahine Volleyball Classic.
The Eagles posted set scores of 15-25, 25-21, 22-25, 19-25 as they fell to 3-4 on the season.
AU senior Kristyna Lindovska added 10 kills against the Hawkeyes, while classmate Allison Cappellino finished with eight kills and a team-high 14 digs. Cappellino, who totaled 26 kills and 26 digs for the weekend, was selected to the all-tournament team for her performance.
Iowa (3-3) was led by Lauren Brobst with 16 kills, while Mikaela Gunderson added 14 kills.
The first set started out close, but the Hawkeyes went on a 12-2 run to pull away. The Eagles scored just six kills and had six errors in the 10-point loss.
American again found itself with a deficit in set two, trailing 12-6. However, the Eagles put together a 12-4 run to take the lead. Hitting .406 in the set, AU was able to capture the second set victory to tie the match.
Set three remained close throughout, but with the score tied at 21-21, Iowa ended with a 4-1 run to take the lead in the match. The Hawkeyes controlled the final set, hitting .452 to seal the win.
For the match, Iowa hit .301, compared to a .176 mark by American. Meanwhile, the Eagles outblocked the Hawkeyes, 11-7, led by seven blocks from freshman Mary Smith.
"This was the third match in a row where we were the better blocking team in terms of making end-rally blocks," said American head coach Barry Goldberg. "However, blocks are only a few points in the game. Attacking and hitting are the bigger part of the game, and in all three matches, the other teams hit better. We had moments where we competed with every one of these teams, but in the long run, their hitters wore us out.
"Our middles are starting to get better as freshmen and sophomores. Our outside hitters have to keep improving for us to be more of an excellent team. That's what we're working on. They're good outside hitters, but we're playing against some of the top ones in the country. They've got to improve their capabilities to try to be competitive with this kind of teams."
The Eagles return to action next weekend, Sept. 11-12, at the Columbia Invitational. American will face Northeastern and NJIT, along with the host Lions.