SAN ANGELO — Fourth-seeded TWU advanced to the semifinals of the Lone Star Conference with a 25-19, 25-17, 23-25, 25-18 win over fifth-seeded Texas A&M-Commerce.
The Pioneers will advance to the semifinals for the eighth time in school history.
Senior Viktorija Jablonska recorded her seventh triple-double of the season, with 11 kills, 14 assists and 11 digs. Junior Josie Santos led the game with a career-high 17 kills.
Four other players recorded nine kills or more for TWU, including junior Courtnee Davis, who posted a career-high 12 kills and led the Pioneers on defense with a game-high 22 digs. Junior Chloe’ Tate and Marcela Alves added nine kills each, while sophomore setters Kayla Rivero and Hanna Marshall had 19 and 18 assists, respectively.
TWU got off to a fast start in the first set with three of the first four points and built an 18-11 lead. The Lions climbed back into the set, cutting the deficit to three, but TWU closed out the set on a 5-1 run.
The Pioneers dominated the second set by posting a .516 hitting percentage. TWU led from start to finish and did not make any errors for an eight-point win. Santos had five kills in the set, while Alves added four.
In the third set, both teams traded the first 30 points before A&M-Commerce scored three straight to take a 19-16 lead. The Pioneers rallied to tie the score, but the Lions captured a two-point win to force a fourth set.
The Lions carried the momentum into the fourth and built an 8-3 lead before TWU responded with an 8-2 run to go on top. The Pioneers extended the lead to five before finishing out the set and the match. Santos added six kills in the set.
“They (Lions) are a good team, but we matched up well against them this season,” TWU head coach Shelly Barberee said. “Our passing and setting set the tone, and I am very happy to see five players with nine or more kills. We had contributions from every player that saw the court.”
TWU dropped only one set to the Lions this season in three matches as the Pioneers improved to 23-7.
TWU will play either Angelo State or Incarnate Word at 7:30 p.m. today.