UAA hitters on fire in volleyball win over Billings

The UAA volleyball team was in attack mode Saturday night for its Great Northwest Athletic Conference match with Montana State-Billings.

The Seawolves set a school record for hitting efficiency in their 25-22, 25-15, 25-8 triumph at the Wells Fargo Sports Center.

Their attack percentage of .437 was a program best in 13 years of GNAC play, beating the old mark of .419, set in November 2011 against Northwest Nazarene. It’s the best in any kind of match since August 2000, when UAA posted a .437 attack percentage against St. Cloud State.

Julia Mackey and Jodi Huddleston operated in rarefied air — Mackey blasted 13 kills on 20 attempts with no errors for a career-high .650 percentage, and Huddleston got kills on four of her six attempts with no errors for a .667 percentage.

Katelynn Zanders (12 kills, career-high .550 percentage), Sarah Johnson (5 kills, .556 percentage) and Erin Braun (4 kills, .571 percentage) all contributed to UAA’s  hitting success.

The win gives UAA a sweep of its season-opening GNAC series, which began Thursday with a four-set win over Seattle Pacific. The Seawolves are 2-0 in conference play and 8-6 overall.

UAA rallied to win the first set. Trailing 17-13, UAA scored seven of the next nine points for a 20-19 lead. Kills by Mackey provided UAA with its final five points of the set.

The Seawolves hit .484 in the second set and .500 in the third to cruise to the victory.

Siobhan Johansen’s 24 assists and three aces and Quinn Barker’s 21 digs and two aces also sparked the Seawolves, who rallied to win the first set and coasted from there.

Billings (0-2, 2-8) was led by Chelsey Walter’s nine kills.

UAA improved to 6-1 at home this season and 44-8 since 2009.