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SIU volleyball falls to Northern Iowa

SIU+assistant+volleyball+coach+Todd+Nelson+reacts+to+a+play+during+the+Salukis%27+3-2+win+over+Northern+Iowa+on+Friday%2C+Sept.+23%2C+2016%2C+at+Davies+Gym.+%28Athena+Chrysanthou+%7C+%40Chrysant1Athena%29
SIU assistant volleyball coach Todd Nelson reacts to a play during the Salukis' 3-2 win over Northern Iowa on Friday, Sept. 23, 2016, at Davies Gym. (Athena Chrysanthou | @Chrysant1Athena)

SIU assistant volleyball coach Todd Nelson reacts to a play during the Salukis' 3-2 win over Northern Iowa on Friday, Sept. 23, 2016, at Davies Gym. (Athena Chrysanthou | @Chrysant1Athena)

SIU assistant volleyball coach Todd Nelson reacts to a play during the Salukis' 3-2 win over Northern Iowa on Friday, Sept. 23, 2016, at Davies Gym. (Athena Chrysanthou | @Chrysant1Athena)

By Sean Carley

A day after getting its first season sweep of an opponent, SIU volleyball lost its first season split.

SIU lost to Northern Iowa three sets to one Saturday in Cedar Falls, dropping into a tie for third with the Panthers in the conference.

The Dawgs hit just .106 for the match, the second-lowest this season.

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SIU’s top two hitters, junior outside hitters Andrea Estrada and Abby Barrow, were held to negative hit percentages at -.024 and -.200, respectively.

Northern Iowa meanwhile was firing on all cylinders, especially in the first two sets. The Panthers won both by scores of 25-14 and 25-15.

The Panthers had plus-.300 hit percentages in sets one and two, in addition to just five errors in the first two sets combined.

SIU didn’t do itself any favors early with 16 errors in that same timeframe. The Salukis committed 29 errors overall in the match, also the second-worst this season.

Estrada had 11 errors in the match, her most this season.

UNI senior middle hitter had four of her 14 kills in the first set, which was tied with sophomore outside hitter Bri Weber for the most in the match.

The Salukis’ efforts for a three-set comeback started off well as they won the third set 25-20.

It was the only set SIU had a hitting percentage above .060 with a .323 mark.

Estrada came back strong in set three with two kills and three consecutive service aces.

UNI caught the error bug in their only set loss, picking up eight along the way.

SIU took it right back in set four with nine errors in the loss-clinching frame.

The Panthers used separate 6-1 and 9-2 runs in the set to put the match away.

SIU will be back home next weekend to face Loyola at 7 p.m. Friday and Bradley at 7 p.m. Saturday in Davies Gym.

Sports editor Sean Carley can be reached at scar@dailyegyptian.com or on Twitter @SCarleyDE.

To stay up to date with all your SIU sports news, follow the Daily Egyptian on Facebook and Twitter.

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