SUU fell behind the Lumberjacks 9-0 in the first set before scoring its first point on an NAU service error. However a blocking error by the Thunderbirds on the very next play gave Northern Arizona a sideout and the home side continued to build the lead to a 14-1 margin. NAU ultimately finished out the set 25-13 to take a 1-0 lead.
Southern Utah's offense hit negative in the second set (-.074) as Northern Arizona hit their best percentage of the night, a .429 clip (10-1-21) to take that frame 25-12. The Thunderbirds fought off four Lumberjack match points in the closing set, coming from 24-14 down before NAU capitalized on a final SUU error for the 25-18 win.
Annie Stradling led Southern Utah's offense with eight kills on the night, hitting .500 with only two errors on 12 swings. Sariah Pelaez led the team in digs with 12 with Stradling also leading the T-Bird block with three. Southern Utah finished the match with more blocks than NAU, 6.0 to 5.0, marking the 10th time the team has out blocked an opponent this season.
SUU will return home for its next pair of matches when the Thunderbirds host Eastern Washington and Portland State on Thursday and Saturday nights. The contests are scheduled to begin at 7:00 p.m. in the Centrum Arena with live stat and live video links available online at www.suutbirds.com.